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Does the Bohr model go against classical Electromagnetism

  1. Jan 21, 2016 #1
    I was told in high school that Rutherford's atomic model was wrong because an electron which is in acceleration must release energy. That's how electromagnetic waves are made. and then I was told that Bohr gave his model and solved this problem. By making energy quantized. But what I really don't understand is how this solves the problem .... Yes it would surely tell us why hydrogen atom gives line spectrum but it doesn't tell us why electron doesn't emit energy. It means either electromagnetic theories are wrong or our understanding of atom is incomplete. In the bohr model, we have an electron which has some mass and revolves around nucleus. It is indeed under acceleration and if we apply electromagnetism it should release energy. I'm sorry if my picture is incomplete or wrong but that's what i was taught. You're more than welcome to correct me and answer me . I'll be grateful to you if you help me clear my concept.
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  3. Jan 21, 2016 #2
    The Bohr model was an intermediate step between classical E&M and quantum mechanics.

    Other than saying "classical E&M does not apply here" the Bohr model did not give a complete explanation.

  4. Jan 21, 2016 #3
    Thanks. Does Quantum mechanics provide a complete explanation as to why electrons do release energy when they are under acceleration in a wire and why they do not when they are in an atom?
  5. Feb 9, 2016 #4


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    For a complete explanation, you need quantum field theory. But for a simple answer, basic quantum mechanics is enough. For an atom to emit, it needs to drop to a lower energy state. The ground state is the lowest energy state, so an atom in the ground state can't emit. The lowest energy state of a wire is one in which the conduction band electrons aren't moving.
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