Free-electron theory of metals
Harrison, Walter A. Department of Applied Physics, Stanford University, Stanford, California.
Last reviewed:June 2020
- Equilibrium properties
- Transport theory
- Electron-lattice interactions
- Interactions among electrons
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
The treatment of a metal as containing a gas of electrons completely free to move within it. The theory was originally proposed in 1900 to describe and correlate the electrical and thermal properties of metals. Later, quantum mechanics became the basis for the theory of most of the general properties of simple metals such as sodium, with one free electron per atom, magnesium with two, and aluminum with three. Transition metals, such as iron, have partially filled electronic d states and are not treated by the free-electron model.
The content above is only an excerpt.
for your institution. Subscribe
To learn more about subscribing to AccessScience, or to request a no-risk trial of this award-winning scientific reference for your institution, fill in your information and a member of our Sales Team will contact you as soon as possible.
to your librarian. Recommend
Let your librarian know about the award-winning gateway to the most trustworthy and accurate scientific information.
AccessScience provides the most accurate and trustworthy scientific information available.
Recognized as an award-winning gateway to scientific knowledge, AccessScience is an amazing online resource that contains high-quality reference material written specifically for students. Contributors include more than 10,000 highly qualified scientists and 46 Nobel Prize winners.
MORE THAN 8700 articles covering all major scientific disciplines and encompassing the McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science & Technology and McGraw-Hill Yearbook of Science & Technology
115,000-PLUS definitions from the McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms
3000 biographies of notable scientific figures
MORE THAN 19,000 downloadable images and animations illustrating key topics
ENGAGING VIDEOS highlighting the life and work of award-winning scientists
SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER STUDY and additional readings to guide students to deeper understanding and research
LINKS TO CITABLE LITERATURE help students expand their knowledge using primary sources of information