(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); 1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

A C O2 molecule is released at the center of a closed room where the air is perfectly still. Take the center as the origin of coordinates. After time t has elapsed, the position of the molecule r is uncertain, but is described by the probability distribution function

f(r) = ( 1/ (4pi Dt)^3/2 ) * exp( -r^2 / 4Dt)

The diﬀusion coeﬃcient of C O2 in air at 300◦ K is given by D = 1.4 × 10^−5 m2 /s. Calculate the probability to ﬁnd the molecule within 0.5m of the origin after one hour.

Hint: Use spherical coordinates and convert the integral by integration by parts to one that you can calculate using the Gaussian distribution integral [say, in terms of the error function erf(x)]. Of course, you may need to use a calculator.

2. Relevant equations

Spherical coordinate: dV = r^2 sin (phi) d(phi) d(theta) dr

3. The attempt at a solution

Is it asking me to find <r^2>? If so, do I find it simply by integrating dr r^2 f(r) from infinity to minus infinity?

Why do I need to use spherical coordinates?

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# Probability density

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