Atomic structure and spectra
Sellin, Ivan A. Department of Physics, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee.
Last reviewed:October 2018
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- History of the concept of atomic structure
- Electromagnetic nature of atoms
- Planetary atomic models
- Scattering experiments
- Bohr atom
- Quantization of the hydrogen atom
- Multielectron atoms
- Exclusion principle
- Spin-orbit coupling
- Spectrum of hydrogen
- Doppler spread
- Additional Readings
The arrangement of the constituents of an atom and the manner in which they interact to form a system (the atomic structure), and the patterns of light frequencies emitted and absorbed by atoms, whereby this atomic structure may be elucidated (the atomic spectra). Atoms are composed of particles known as protons and neutrons clustered together in a positively charged nucleus, surrounded by negatively charged particles known as electrons (Fig. 1). This structure, as well as its attendant physical properties, has been borne out through theoretical and experimental advances going back more than two centuries. In particular, the measurement of spectra from atoms has enabled the characterization of these fundamental units of matter. See also: Atom; Atomic nucleus; Atomic physics; Atomic theory; Chemistry; Electron; Matter (physics); Neutron; Physics; Proton; Spectrum
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