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Homework Help: Estimate average speed of electrons in gas?

  1. Jul 22, 2017 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Suppose that a heated gas comprised of electrons glows bright orange when it is in use. Estimate the average speed of the electrons in the gas. Model this gas as an ideal gas.

    2. Relevant equations
    None. I have no clue. This is a "review" question on a chapter titled "Current and Resistance."
    It's under the section "Microscopic model of charge flow," but I have no clue what equations I can use here.

    possibly Ke = 1/2 m v ^2? That's the first one that comes to mind.

    3. The attempt at a solution

    Sorry I know it's not good to do this but I just don't know what to do.

    I think the answer may be dependent on the gas glowing bright orange part?

    I know:

    -the particles in an ideal gas do not interact with one another
    -particles are free to move in any direction at any speed

    but these facts still don't help me *shrug*
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 23, 2017 #2
    You're on the right track. The color is important. Check out the phenomena called incandescence (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incandescence). The idea is that the color is related to the temperature. In other words, you can use the color to get an idea of what the temperature is. Now what is temperature? Based on the definition, what other useful quantities do you think you might be able to find from the temperature? Keep in mind that it's an ideal gas.
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