1. Not finding help here? Sign up for a free 30min tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Why, IF electrons really orbited atoms, would they lose energy?

  1. Dec 11, 2013 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    Why, IF electrons really orbited atoms, would they lose energy?
    2. Relevant equations



    3. The attempt at a solution
    I realise they're meant to emit light. But why? I understand vaguely that the E field might be changing with time, since you have a changing magnetic flux... but where does the changing E field come from? Unless I guess it's just a self supporting process (changing B field *causes* changing E here...) - is that just what a light ray is??

    Many Thanks!!!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 11, 2013 #2
    Draw up a picture of a simple atom, like a hydrogen atom. Ignore the contribution from the atom core to the electric field.

    Pick a random point and write down the electric field in that point, draw it again after half a period (For the orbiting electron).

    Will the electric field be different in the two pictures.
     
  4. Dec 11, 2013 #3
    Oh right, for sure. The electron is at a different distance from the point! Sorry!
     
  5. Dec 11, 2013 #4
    A moving charge always produces a changing E field, that should be obvious. Take any fixed point P in space. At some time, the charge Q is at distance A from P. At some other time, Q is at distance B from P. Because A and B are different, the E field at P must also be different.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?
Draft saved Draft deleted