Version D Atomic Emission Spectra Questions

Name: _________________________________ Section Number: _________

Watch the Video:

Fill in the tables with 4 significant figures and answer the following questions and make sure you show your work for ALL calculations.

Table 1. Silicon Metal

Wavelength (nm)Frequency (Hz)Energy (J)Light color or Radiation
(max) _______


Table 2. Different Metals

MetalMax. Wavelength (nm)Frequency (Hz)Energy (J)


What do your results for silicon, germanium, tin, and lead indicate? The energy you calculated for the maximum wavelength represents the minimum energy required to eject an electron. Is there any trend? Consider the position of these elements in the periodic table and what ejecting an electron from an atom represents?

Table 3. Hydrogen emission

Line Number:Wavelength (nm)Frequency (Hz)Energy (J)
Line #1 (Left)410
Line #2434
Line #3487
Line #4 (Right)656


The four lines you see in the visible region for the atomic emission spectrum of hydrogen are the so called Balmer series. They are due to electron transitions from atomic energy n=6 to n=2, n=5 to n=2, n=4 to n=2, and n=3 to n=2.

Table 4. Balmer Series for hydrogen

TransitionEnergy Difference (J)Wavelength (nm)Color
n=3 to n=2
n=4 to n=2
n=5 to n=2
n=6 to n=2


What is the difference between the emission spectra of the molecules and those of the elements you observed in the video? Why do you think the emission spectra of the elements and molecules are so different?

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