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Determine the energy and number of configurations

  1. Dec 18, 2012 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    N surfactant molecules occupy an interface with A binding sites. The molecule has energy= -ε when perpendicular to the interface, and -δ when parallel to the interface (ε>δ>0). M is the number of surfactants perpendicular to the interface.

    For a given value of M, determine the energy E(M) and the number of configurations [itex]\Gamma[/itex](M)

    2. Relevant equations

    None that I know of...

    3. The attempt at a solution

    I don't even know where to begin. Any advice or direction much appreciated.
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data



    2. Relevant equations



    3. The attempt at a solution
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 19, 2012 #2

    mfb

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    2016 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    If M molecules are perpendicular to the interface and have an energy -ε each, how many of the N molecules are parallel and have an energy -δ each? What is the total energy of all molecules together?
    In how many ways can you choose M particles out of N?
     
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