Question Video: Determining the Ground State of an Electron in Bohr’s Model of Hydrogen | Nagwa Question Video: Determining the Ground State of an Electron in Bohr’s Model of Hydrogen | Nagwa

# Question Video: Determining the Ground State of an Electron in Bohr’s Model of Hydrogen Chemistry • Second Year of Secondary School

In the Bohr model of the hydrogen atom, which of the following is correct? [A] The electron occupies the energy level furthest from the nucleus to generate its ground state. [B] The electron occupies the energy level nearest to the nucleus to generate its ground state. [C] The electron occupies the energy level nearest to the nucleus to generate its excited state. [D] The electron occupies the space between energy levels to generate its ground state.

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### Video Transcript

In the Bohr model of the hydrogen atom, which of the following is correct? (A) The electron occupies the energy level furthest from the nucleus to generate its ground state. (B) The electron occupies the energy level nearest to the nucleus to generate its ground state. (C) The electron occupies the energy level nearest to the nucleus to generate its excited state. Or (D) the electron occupies the space between energy levels to generate its ground state.

This question refers to the Bohr model of the atom, which suggested that electrons move around the nucleus in flat circular orbits. The Bohr model also suggested that the energy of the electrons in those orbits is directly proportional to the radii of their orbits. Because the question is referring to a hydrogen atom, the atom would contain only one electron and one proton. The answer choices given all refer to either the behavior of an electron in what is called its ground state or its excited state.

An electron in its ground state is occupying the lowest possible energy state. In other words, the electron will occupy the closest possible energy level to the nucleus. As radius and energy are proportional, the energy level with the smallest radius will have the lowest energy. When an electron is in its excited state, it is promoted out of its ground state by absorbing energy and thus moves to a higher energy level. Now occupying an energy level that has a larger radius, the electron is in a higher energy state.

It is worth noting that this electron excitement is temporary, and after releasing a certain amount of energy, often in the form of light, the electron returns to its ground state. Let’s have a look at our answer choices.

Answer choice (A) suggests that for an electron to be in its ground state, it will occupy an energy level as far from the nucleus as possible. We have seen that this is opposite to what is true for an electron in the ground state. We can eliminate answer choice (A).

Answer choice (B) describes exactly what occurs for an electron in its ground state. Answer choice (B) is the correct answer. Let’s have a look at answer choices (C) and (D) just to be sure.

Answer choice (C) suggests that for an excited electron, it must be in an energy level as close to the nucleus as possible. This is true for an electron in the ground state, but not the excited state. We can eliminate answer choice (C).

Answer choice (D) suggests that ground state electrons can occupy spaces between energy levels. The Bohr model of the atom suggested that it was not possible for electrons to be in between orbits, but that they must occupy the fixed energy levels. We can eliminate answer choice (D).

Therefore, the statement that correctly describes the Bohr model of the hydrogen atom is answer choice (B), the electron occupies the energy level nearest to the nucleus to generate its ground state.

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