What is of an atom and how common it is?

  1. Does a ground state of atom actually exist on our planet or every atom or molecule is just somehow excited because of all the energy flying around?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. mfb

    Staff: Mentor

    Most atoms and molecules are in the ground state, as the exited levels are usually of the order of ~1 electron volt away, which is much higher than usual thermal energy levels (~1/40 electron volt).
     
  4. and are the thermal enegy levels stable? can you work with them or is the state just vibrating between ground state and state evoked by absorbed thermal energy?
     
  5. mfb

    Staff: Mentor

    What do you mean by "are the thermal energy levels stable"?
    Rotations in molecules and other stuff are often exited and change their state quickly in a medium.
     
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