Electron structure, am really confused. Watch

Callum_22
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Hi everyone, im really confused with my gcse studying (next year). In lesson ive been taught the first shell can hold upto 2 electrons, the second 8, the thrid 8 also, and then 16 in the 4th, what is after that? Does the 5th hold 32? 16? please help.
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AzureCeleste
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(Original post by Callum_22)
Hi everyone, im really confused with my gcse studying (next year). In lesson ive been taught the first shell can hold upto 2 electrons, the second 8, the thrid 8 also, and then 16 in the 4th, what is after that? Does the 5th hold 32? 16? please help.
What you have been taught is all you need to know
Electrons at GCSE level are taught to the uttermost basics. The arrangement of them is actually quite different. You don't need to know how many the 5th or 6th hold
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medic223
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you do not need to know it at all, it's pretty much useless knowledge even if you did know unless you're at degree level or something. I got by fine without knowing and I'm still fine as I am a first year A level chemistry student
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Callum_22
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(Original post by AzureCeleste)
What you have been taught is all you need to know
Electrons at GCSE level are taught to the uttermost basics. The arrangement of them is actually quite different. You don't need to know how many the 5th or 6th hold
I see, but i would really like to understand what is after so if i wanted i could draw the electron structure of any elements i choose but i am unable to do that because i cant go past the 4th shell.
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AzureCeleste
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(Original post by Callum_22)
I see, but i would really like to understand what is after so if i wanted i could draw the electron structure of any elements i choose but i am unable to do that because i cant go past the 4th shell.
The point is, you can't actually because the electron structure is not as simple as two in the first and 8 in the second. The layout of them is slightly different. Even going to A-level you don't really learn what happens after the 4th shell properly.
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Callum_22
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(Original post by AzureCeleste)
The point is, you can't actually because the electron structure is not as simple as two in the first and 8 in the second. The layout of them is slightly different. Even going to A-level you don't really learn what happens after the 4th shell properly.
Ah okay. So is it possible to draw the electron structure of oganesson? Or anything that requires more than 5 shells?
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AzureCeleste
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(Original post by Callum_22)
Ah okay. So is it possible to draw the electron structure of oganesson? Or anything that requires more than 5 shells?
Well yeah, google it. But like don't get worked up on it
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Pigster
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(Original post by Callum_22)
Hi everyone, im really confused with my gcse studying (next year). In lesson ive been taught the first shell can hold upto 2 electrons, the second 8, the thrid 8 also, and then 16 in the 4th, what is after that? Does the 5th hold 32? 16? please help.
For GCSE, 2.8.8.2 will do as you won't go over Ca. And if you do, you don't need to pay any attention to inner shells, you'll only need worry about the last number, which will 'want' 8 in it (assuming it is a non-metal).

Actually it goes 2.8.18.32. 2n^2, where n is the shell number.
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Kallisto
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(Original post by Callum_22)
Hi everyone, im really confused with my gcse studying (next year). In lesson ive been taught the first shell can hold upto 2 electrons, the second 8, the thrid 8 also, and then 16 in the 4th, what is after that? Does the 5th hold 32? 16? please help.
As many another people certainly told you here, the number 8 means that the octet rule is done what in turn means that an electron shell is completed, but not maximized. Electrons which came from higher electron shells, are able to go to lower ones and fill them up to 16.

8 electrons on a shell just means that the next electrons can achieve a higher level by a higher electron shell. Shells with 8 electrons are in a stable condition and thus sluggish in reaction, so the atoms which come as next need new electron shells to react with.
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robertgallacher
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Electronic structure is much more complicated than just 2.8.8.2 (using Calcium as an example). At A-Level we learn it as 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s3 3p6 4s2, where we include the sub-shells (the first number is the main shell, the second number is the type of sub-shell - there are four but some only come out much later down the table - and the final number is the amount of the electrons). This is why Calcium is usually the upper limit as Scandium, the next element is 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s3 3p6 4s2 3d1. Here we can see that although the 4s electrons are in the fourth shell and the 3d electrons the third, the 3d electrons are further out, which is counter-intuitive to what you may have learnt at GCSE. This is why the simplified GCSE way of working is rarely used beyond that, and it doesn't make as much sense to label it like that. If you are interested I can link some resources which explain it, but I'd recommend waiting until A-Level, it's often one of the very first things explained, and with less simplifications than I have used here.
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Meowstic
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all the people attempting to explain it in slightly different ways should tell you that you're not going to get taught it properly for a while.
also an atom is a three dimensional object any drawing is going to get more and more useless as you increase the principal quantum number
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Kallisto
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(Original post by Callum_22)
Hi everyone, im really confused with my gcse studying (next year). In lesson ive been taught the first shell can hold upto 2 electrons, the second 8, the thrid 8 also, and then 16 in the 4th, what is after that? Does the 5th hold 32? 16? please help.
By the way it is always the lower electron shell (not the outer one!) which have more than 8 electrons. It is as I said: when the outer electron shell got 8 electrons, noble gas configuration is achieved and whenever this is done, the electron shell is completed. Later on, at higher electron shells, electrons leap from a higher to a lower shell to stable the energy level. And that is the reason that some shells have more than 8.
Last edited by Kallisto; 1 month ago
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