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    Why some shells like 4s2 with a higher energy level are lower than the ones like 3 d10 with a lower energy level?
    Then why is it called 4s if it has a lower energy level
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    (Original post by awais.amer)
    Why some shells like 4s2 with a higher energy level are lower than the ones like 3 d10 with a lower energy level?
    Then why is it called 4s if it has a lower energy level
    An interesting question...

    I suppose it has something to do with the supposed shape of the orbitals in question. A s orbital is spherical and a d orbital are like a bunch of dumbbells. Because of this an electron in a 3d orbital will more likely be further away from the nucleus compared to an electron in a 4s orbital. (probability)

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    (Original post by awais.amer)
    Why some shells like 4s2 with a higher energy level are lower than the ones like 3 d10 with a lower energy level?
    Then why is it called 4s if it has a lower energy level
    The orbitals and their designations are derived from solutions to the Schroedinger equation, which determined (for a hydrogen atom) that there were three subshells in energy level 3 and four subshells in energy level 4.

    3s 3p 3d
    4s 4p 4d 4f

    Empirically, we find that the 4s level has lower energy than the 3d level, which is why potassium and calcium fill up 4s before 3d
 
 
 
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