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1 AP Chemistry Lab Brockport High School NY USA Energy levels of the Hydrogen Atom Mr Keefer Obj: Determine the photon energy in Joules and the quantum number of the electrons returning to n = 2 (Balmer Series) in the hydrogen atom. Introduction The spectrum of hydrogen is particularly important in astronomy because most of the Universe is made of hydrogen. Emission or absorption processes in hydrogen give rise to series , which are sequences of lines corresponding to atomic transitions, each ending or beginning with the same atomic state in hydrogen. Thus, for example, the Balmer Series involves transitions starting (for absorption) or ending (for emission) with the first excited state (n=2) of hydrogen, while the Lyman Series involves transitions that start or end with the ground state (n=1) of hydrogen. Because of the details of hydrogen's atomic structure, the Balmer Series is in the visible spectrum and the Lyman Series is in the UV. The Balmer lines are designated by H with a greek subscript in order of decreasing wavelength. Thus the longest wavelength Balmer
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