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Homework Help: Why is copper diamagnetic?

  1. Jul 30, 2012 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Our teacher said that if a material has an odd number of electrons, it implies a paramagnetic behavior. Copper, according to him, has odd number of electrons but is considered a diamagnetic material. He asks us to explain this phenomenon.

    2. Relevant equations
    Copper has 29 electrons. And its electron configuration is 1s22s22p63s23p64s13d10

    3. The attempt at a solution
    According to what they (internet) say, the d subshell borrowed an electron from the s subshell on n=3 (see electron configuration). This accounts for the diamagnetism. But isn't it that the electron on the s subshell is unpaired, and should cause the Cu to paramagnetic? Or is it the outermost subshell that is only considered? :( Thanks a lot.
  2. jcsd
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