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Homework Help: Bohr Model Electron Movement Question

  1. Mar 30, 2010 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    How does an electron get from an excited state (r = 4ao) to a ground state (r = ao) without being anywhere in between?

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution

    My only attempt would be to say that it does exist between for a short time, and during that time it emits a photon. The book I'm working with poses the question but lends no hint toward how to answer it, it simply states the electron "jumps" between states.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 30, 2010 #2


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    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    The idea is that the electron is described by a wavefunction, which is non-zero at every position... [itex]r=a_0[/itex] is just the most probable position for you to find an electron in the ground state, when you measure its position.

    The electron's position doesn't jump from [itex]r=4a_0[/itex] to [itex]r=a_0[/itex], only its most probable location, upon measurement, makes that jump.
  4. Mar 30, 2010 #3
    Awesome, thank you so much.
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