# Photoelectric effect angle

1. Mar 25, 2008

### i_island0

hey.. can some one tell me... when photo electrons come out of the metal surface.... then are those emissions normal to the surface or they come out at any angle from the surface.

2. Mar 25, 2008

### Schrodinger's Dog

Wouldn't they come out at any angle? I'm not suggesting I'm correct by the way but from what I know of electrons and quantum mechanics, the emission of photons (or indeed electrons) would be a matter of statistical probability and thus position of emission and direction would not be known. Just a guess, but I can't see how they'd be emitted at precisely the same angle? Probably completely wrong but there you go. If nothing else I'll learn why I am wrong.

Last edited: Mar 25, 2008
3. Mar 25, 2008

### ZapperZ

Staff Emeritus
There is a spread in the angle.

However, in the standard photoelectric effect, you apply a potential to collect all of the photoelectrons, so this spread isn't a factor. In an angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy experiment, though, this angular spread is one of the things that is being measured.

Zz.

Last edited: Mar 25, 2008