# Why is that an atom doesn't absorb more than the required amount of energy.?

• srikanth
In summary, a water molecule cannot be heated individually. The change in phases, such as from liquid to steam, is a collective phenomenon that depends on the average kinetic energy of a large number of molecules. The heat of vaporization for water is 40.65 kJ per mole of water, which means that a single water molecule can absorb 6.752 x 10^-20 J of energy to change its state from liquid to gas. Any additional energy will then increase the temperature of the water vapor.
srikanth
consider a water molecule..
it is heated beyond its boiling temperature..it turns into wet and superheated steam..later
but what happens to..it..
??

You can't heat a single molecule. The various phases of of water are COLLECTIVE phenomena and depends on the average kinetic energy of a LOT of molecules; the molecules themselves do not change as the water goes from e.g liquid to steam.

but guess..wat is d amount of heat absorbed by a single molecule..?
if a molecule is subjected to some amount of heat hypothetically..den wat is d amount dat it can absorb...dat is wat I am tryin to know

Since the heat of vaporization of water is 40.65 kJ/ 1 mole of water, and there are 6.02 x 10^23 molecules in 1 mole of water, dividing 40.65/6.02x10^23 gives you 6.752 x 10^-20 J/ molecule to change state from liquid to gas. This is the amount of latent heat absorbed by a single water molecule. It's temperature doesn't change during the state change. After the water molecule absorbs that amount of energy, any additional energy will go into increasing the temperature of the water vapor, which as f95toli said, is the average kinetic energy of the system, or the mole of water in this case.

## 1. Why can't an atom absorb more energy than it needs?

Atoms have a limited number of energy levels or "shells" in which electrons can exist. Once an electron has absorbed enough energy to reach the highest energy level, it cannot absorb any more energy. This is due to the laws of quantum mechanics.

## 2. What determines the maximum amount of energy that an atom can absorb?

The maximum amount of energy that an atom can absorb is determined by the energy difference between its current energy level and the next highest level. Once an electron has reached the highest energy level, it cannot absorb any more energy.

## 3. How does the structure of an atom affect its ability to absorb energy?

The structure of an atom, specifically the arrangement of electrons in its energy levels, determines its ability to absorb energy. An atom with a more complex electron configuration will have a higher capacity for absorbing energy compared to an atom with a simpler configuration.

## 4. Can an atom absorb less than the required amount of energy?

Yes, an atom can absorb less than the required amount of energy. This is known as partial absorption and occurs when an electron jumps to a higher energy level but does not have enough energy to reach the next highest level.

## 5. What happens if an atom absorbs more energy than it needs?

If an atom absorbs more energy than it needs, the excess energy will be released in the form of light or heat. This is known as emission, and the emitted energy will match the difference between the electron's initial and final energy levels.

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