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Homework Help: Electrical stability of an atom

  1. Oct 18, 2011 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    As shown in class the electric potential energy of a water molecule is -5.33 eV. Which molecule is more electrically stable, H2O or CO? Why?

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution

    The water molecule's EPE is -5.33 eV. The carbon monoxide molecule's EPE is -2.04 eV. Am I correct in believing that the carbon monoxide molecule is more stable, as the magnitude of its charge is lower?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 18, 2011 #2


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    The question has do do with potential energy, not charge.
  4. Oct 18, 2011 #3
    Alright then, let's see . . .

    eV is a unit of energy. Therefore would I be correct in concluding that the CO molecule has a quantity of energy closer to zero and therefore it would be more electrically stable?
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