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HomeOpinion and ExpressionEducationHow Do Electrons Keep Revolving Around The Nucleus Without Slowing Down?

How Do Electrons Keep Revolving Around The Nucleus Without Slowing Down?

How do electrons keep revolving around the Nucleus without slowing down? It is a question of research in the early 20th Century. Scientists had come to know about atoms after studying them. 

This will be interesting to know about how electrons keep revolving around the nucleus without slowing down. 

On the other hand, there is another factor: from where do these electrons get energy to spin around an atom’s nucleus? Now, let’s discuss some of the interesting facts of this research.

How Do Electrons Keep Revolving? Research And Analysis

After countless experiments in the early 20th century, physicists were just beginning to put together a coherent picture of the atom. Accordingly, they realised that each atom had a dense, heavy, positively charged nucleus. And, its surroundings are the tiny, negatively charged electrons. 

But there is a problem with this model. As you know, a charged particle that accelerates, emits electromagnetic radiation. And, Electrons will quickly spiral in and collide if this is going to be according to the solar system.

Thus, this model doesn’t work in answering how electrons keep revolving without slowing down. 

Niel Bohr’s Research In Electrons

Famed Danish physicist Niel Bohr was the first person to research this issue. Accordingly, in 1913, he suggested that electrons in an atom had to be locked into orbits at very specific distances.

In addition, he proposed that there was a minimum distance an electron could reach. And, that it could move no closer to the nucleus.

However, a decade ago,  German physicist Max Planck had proposed that the emission of radiation might be “quantized.” It means an object could only absorb or emit radiation in discrete chunks. 

And, the smallest size of these discrete chunks was a constant, which came to be known as Planck’s constant. Now, Planck’s constant has the same units as angular momentum. Or the momentum of an object moving in a circle.

Then, Bohr imported this idea to electrons orbiting a nucleus. He said  that the smallest possible orbit of an electron would equal the angular momentum of exactly one Planck constant. However, higher orbits could have twice that value, or three times, or any other integer multiple of the Planck constant.

Quantum Mechanics Explains Why Electrons Keep Revolving Around Nucleus

As you know that an electron orbiting a nucleus is electrically attracts to the nucleus. And it’s always being closer. But the electron also has kinetic energy. And, it works to send the electron flying away.

Accordingly, this means you have to add energy to the atom if you want to remove the electron. For example: To remove a planet from the solar system, you’d have to add energy to the system.

Now, one may imagine an electron “falling” toward a nucleus, due to opposite electric charge. But because of the rules of quantum mechanics, it can’t ever reach the nucleus. So, it gets stuck with it, forever orbiting. 

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