What is a radial Node ? What is an Angular Node ?

  1. Can anyone give me a picture of what the above terms mean..I know the mathematical meaning like

    But i want to know like how and what exactly is a radial node and an angular node !

    The node of an S sub shell is easy but where are the nodes in the P and d Sub shell ? And please explain what radial node and angular node mean..Thanks !
  2. jcsd
  3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Hydrogen_Density_Plots.png

    Nodes are typically considered where the solution is stationary at 0. For radial nodes, f(R)=0 for all angles. They look circular in the picture above. For angular nodes f(someAngle)=0 for all R. They look like the slices.
  4. alxm

    alxm 1,845
    Science Advisor

    You'll also find that all orbitals where n > l have radial nodes (i.e. every orbital except the first s,p,d and f orbitals), and every orbital where n > 1 (i.e. non-s orbitals) have angular nodes.
  5. I know the technical defination of nadoes but i need a pictorial defination..So that i can understand how it looks !
  6. Was the picture in the link insufficient? Its color coded in 2d instead of 3d -- so black represented the zeros (nodes), and the reds represented non-zero values.
  7. But what about angular nodes...Where are they ??
  8. chemisttree

    chemisttree 3,717
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Think of the difference between radial nodes and angular nodes as being like looking at a bullseye vs. a 4-leaf clover. The nodes are the spaces between the circles in the case of the bullseye (radial node) and the spaces between the leaves in the case of the 4-leaf clover (angular node).
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