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Homework Help: Specific parts of the emission spectrum of a sodium lamp

  1. May 11, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Part a) The emission spectrum for Sodium lamp contains a reasonably bright red line in its spectrum. What is its origin?

    Part b) The possible transitions between electron energy levels for Sodium were analysed. There were no transitions between the s series (s subshell) and d series (d subshell). Why is that?

    2. Relevant equations
    None really.

    3. The attempt at a solution

    Part a) I analysed the diffuse d series and this red line isn't in it. I also analysed the origin of the famous yellow doublet but that really isn't overly relevent. I've done a heap of browsing the web and books and am yet to find anything at all. Most sources simply talk about the yellow doublet

    Part b) As I said, I analysed the diffuse d series but these are all transitions between d orbitals and the 3p energy level. I'm thinking something along the lines of not conserving angular momentum or spin or something would prevent transitions between d and s series but I'm really not sure. As with Part a), the web and books have been useless so far so this is a bit of a last resort.

    Thank you kindly in advance.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 11, 2009 #2
    I found a database with all known wavelengths but I have no real idea of where the red wavelength is so it's so hard to tell.
  4. May 11, 2009 #3
    For part b) I was told it's not to do with conservation of spin. Conservation of angular momentum perhaps?
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