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Energy level after photon absorbtion

  1. Sep 18, 2012 #1
    Say a photon was absorbed by an electron at 1s in an oxygen atom but it only had enough energy to move it to another energy level that was already occupied such a 2s etc. What happens to this photon?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 18, 2012 #2

    mfb

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    The photon does not get absorbed if there is no available unoccupied energy level for the electron.
     
  4. Sep 19, 2012 #3
    so how does the electron know that the photon does not have enough energy to move it to a free orbital?
     
  5. Sep 19, 2012 #4

    mfb

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    Quantum mechanics. If a process is impossible, it just does not happen.
     
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