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Homework Help: Life time of the hydrogen 2p state

  1. Nov 28, 2008 #1
    The problem statement
    An electron going from 2p to 1s state in hydrogen sits up at the 2p for a while then jumps down.
    with the given eqn
    [itex]W=\frac {4*\alpha*\omega^3}{3*c^2}*\mid r12\mid^2 [/itex]
    [itex]\mid r12\mid^2=\mid<1\mid x\mid2>\mid^2+\mid<1\mid y\mid2>\mid^2+\mid<1\mid z\mid2>\mid^2 [/itex]

    alpha is fine structure cons, omega is the energy diff and c is speed of light

    I'd imagine the life time is 1/W as the rate is per second.

    The attempt at a solution
    The question is okay except for the [itex]\mid r12\mid^2[/itex] part. Is the [itex]\mid r12\mid^2 part the expectation value of r or do i need to do the x,y,z separatly. The statement, in the question, of what [itex]\mid r12\mid^2 is confuses me.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 26, 2011 #2
    You have to do it separately, the expectation value is the matrix element of an operator between the same states, here you have two different states.
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