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Electron orbitals

Electron orbitals

A152/0024

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SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Artist's impression of electron orbitals surrounding an atomic nucleus. This representation owes much to classical physics, and shows the electrons as discrete particles inhabiting fixed orbital paths. This is known as the Bohr Model. Quantum physics describes the electrons as inhabiting a probability 'cloud' around the nucleus, and exhibiting both particle and wave properties. A classical fixed orbit would allow the precise measurement of position and velocity of a given electron, prohibited by Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle in the quantum world.

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