# 15.2 Emission and absorption spectra

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## Emission spectra

You have learnt previously about the structure of an atom. The electrons surrounding the atomic nucleus are arranged in a series of levels of increasing energy. Each element has its own distinct set of energy levels. This arrangement of energy levels serves as the atom's unique fingerprint.

In the early 1900s, scientists found that a liquid or solid heated to high temperatures would give off a broad range of colours of light. However, a gas heated to similar temperatures would emit light only at certain specific colours (wavelengths). The reason for this observation was not understood at the time.

Scientists studied this effect using a discharge tube.

A discharge tube ( [link] ) is a glass gas-filled tube with a metal plate at both ends. If a large enough voltage difference is applied between the two metal plates, the gas atoms inside the tube will absorb enough energy to make some of their electrons come off i.e. the gas atoms are ionised. These electrons start moving through the gas and create a current, which raises some electrons in other atoms to higher energy levels. Then as the electrons in the atoms fall back down, they emit electromagnetic radiation (light). The amount of light emitted at different wavelengths, called the emission spectrum , is shown for a discharge tube filled with hydrogen gas in [link] below. Only certain wavelengths (i.e. colours) of light are seen as shown by the thick black lines in the picture.

Eventually, scientists realized that these lines come from photons of a specific energy, emitted by electrons making transitions between specific energy levels of the atom. [link] shows an example of this happening. When an electron in an atom falls from a higher energy level to a lower energy level, it emits a photon to carry off the extra energy. This photon's energy is equal to the energy difference between the two energy levels. As we previously discussed, the frequency of a photon is related to its energy through the equation $E=hf$ . Since a specific photon frequency (or wavelength) gives us a specific colour, we can see how each coloured line is associated with a specific transition.

formula of heat reaction
final energy-initial energy of substances
Chantel
what is the difference between ethene and ethane
Ethane is a saturated organic molecule while ethene is unsaturated Ethane has 2 carbon atoms and 6 hydrogen atoms, while ethene has 2 Carbons and 4 hydrogens Ethane has single bond between the 2 Carbon atoms while ethene has double bond
Rito
How do you know that the reaction is in acid medium or basic medium
What formular is used when source and Observer are moving towards to each other
put a + on top n - on the bottom
Sanele
what is doppler effect?
doppler effect is the perceived change in frequency of a sound caused by either the source or the listener
Qaqamba
moving relative to each other
Qaqamba
A Catalyst is a chemical substance that speeds up a chemical reaction.
It does this by lowering the activation energy.
Sheron
what is exothermic
reaction that releases energy
Beauty
what is a catalyst
Joseph
Catalyst is to speed up the reaction
CELO
catalyst is a substance added into a solution to speed up the process
Joseph
As it speeds up the reaction by lowering the activation energy, it does not take part in the reactants or products formed
Rito
reaction that release energy
Qaqamba
what is exothermic
reaction that gives off heat to the surroundings
Thabile
formula for calculating the heat of reaction
Anelisiwe
I need help in electrostatic
in exactly in electrostatic
Beauty
send the question on electrostatic maybe I can help
Beauty
factors affecting the rate of reaction
hi
Xiluva
hi
Mashweme
hey
Musa
I'm xiluva ...do we help those who are having challenges on their studies?
Xiluva
I mean on physical science
Xiluva
I believe it's supposed to be like that. Helping those who are having educational challenges
Rito
Yep physical sciences more specifically
Rito
ok ....nna I need some help in physics electricity ...just hints how we do what n how to solve some of the problem... just hints
Xiluva
The first thing you can do is to understand ohm's law and the difference between a series and parallel connection concerning current, resistance and potential difference
Thendo
Hi Xiluva,not sure if this will be helpful but to understand electricity better I suggest you download Siyavula physical science books there's both a learner book and a teacher's guide I was struggling too they really did help you might be able to do some exercises after reading siyavula material
LUTHO
what diode mean
Ansiwe
diode s a part of electrical current tht allows only moves to one direction ..only ...
Frank
allows current .....to flow to one direction I meant .
Frank
ok thanks
Ansiwe
ok thanks guys
Xiluva
temperature surface area concentration addition of a catalyst
Joseph
thank you mr
Mzukisi
How to calculate e.p
ep=mgh
mudodzwa
Ep=mgh
Maximurm
What is polymer
chemical compound with molecules bonded together in long ,repeating chains
Bukani
hey guys i need help with the topic of forces and their application
A force is a pull or push and it can be applied in rocket launchers moving cars & stoping (breaking them).
Duncan
A force is that Agency which changes the object's state of rest or motion. A push or pull are the effects of force.
Katiso
are you sure u wantd to ask tht or u wantd to say " how many bonds are there in alkane nd their names?" ?
I also think that's what she meant 'coz I don't really understand her question
LINDOKUHLE
yeah nd if that's th case , there are only single bonds wch I could say one of em tht I know is methane
Frank
I mean methane,ethane they end up to what
Sylvia
well I also assume ths is wah u lookin for .. methane , ethane , propane, butane, pentane, hexane , Heptane, octane , nonane , decane . is ths wah u wanted ?
Frank
how many alkane are there n there names