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ELECTRONIC

CONFIGURATIONS
ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS

CONTENTS
The Bohr Atom
Levels and sub-levels
Rules and principles
Orbitals
Rules for filling orbitals.
The Aufbau principle
Electronic configurations of elements 1 to 36
Electronic configurations of ions
ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS
Before you start it would be helpful to

Know that electrons can be found outside the nucleus in energy levels ( shells)
Know the electronic configurations of the first 20 elements in 2,8,1 notation
THE BOHR ATOM

Ideas about the structure of the atom have


changed over the years. The Bohr theory
thought of it as a small nucleus of protons and
neutrons surrounded by circulating electrons.
Each shell or energy level could hold a maximum
number of electrons.
Maximum electrons
The energy of levels became greater as they got per shell
further from the nucleus and electrons filled
energy levels in order. 1st shell 2
2nd shell 8
3rd shell 18
The theory couldnt explain certain aspects of
chemistry. 4th shell 32
5th shell 50
LEVELS AND SUB-LEVELS
PRINCIPAL
ENERGY
LEVELS

4
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

The energy gap between successive


levels got increasingly smaller as the
levels got further from the nucleus. The
3 importance of this is discussed later.

1
LEVELS AND SUB-LEVELS
PRINCIPAL SUB LEVELS
ENERGY
LEVELS

4
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

A study of Ionisation Energies and the


periodic properties of elements suggested
that the main energy levels were split
into sub levels.
3 Level 1 was split into 1 sub level
Level 2 was split into 2 sub levels
Level 3 was split into 3 sub levels
Level 4 was split into 4 sub levels
2

CONTENTS
RULES AND PRINCIPLES

HEISENBERGS UNCERTAINTY PRINCIPLE


You cannot determine the position and momentum of an electron at the same time.
This means that you cannot say exactly where an electron is.

THE AUFBAU PRINCIPLE


Electrons enter the lowest available energy level.

PAULIS EXCLUSION PRINCIPLE


No two electrons can have the same four quantum numbers.
Two electrons can go in each orbital, providing they are of opposite spin.

HUNDS RULE OF MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY


When in orbitals of equal energy, electrons will try to remain unpaired.
Placing two electrons in one orbital means that, as they are both negatively charged,
there will be some electrostatic repulsion between them. Placing each electron in a
separate orbital reduces the repulsion and the system is more stable. It can be
described as the SITTING ON A BUS RULE!
ORBITALS
An orbital is... a region in space where one is likely to find an electron.
Orbitals can hold up to two electrons as long as they have opposite spin; this
is known as PAULIS EXCLUSION PRINCIPAL.
Orbitals have different shapes...
ORBITALS
An orbital is... a region in space where one is likely to find an electron.
Orbitals can hold up to two electrons as long as they have opposite spin; this is
known as PAULIS EXCLUSION PRINCIPAL.
Orbitals have different shapes...

ORBITAL SHAPE OCCURRENCE


s spherical one in every principal level
p dumb-bell three in levels from 2 upwards
d various five in levels from 3 upwards
f various seven in levels from 4 upwards
ORBITALS
An orbital is... a region in space where one is likely to find an electron.
Orbitals can hold up to two electrons as long as they have opposite spin; this is
known as PAULIS EXCLUSION PRINCIPAL.
Orbitals have different shapes...

ORBITAL SHAPE OCCURRENCE


s spherical one in every principal level
p dumb-bell three in levels from 2 upwards
d various five in levels from 3 upwards
f various seven in levels from 4 upwards

An orbital is a 3-dimensional statistical shape showing where one is most likely to


find an electron. Because, according to Heisenberg, you cannot say exactly where
an electron is you are only able to say where it might be found.

DO NOT CONFUSE AN ORBITAL WITH AN ORBIT


SHAPES OF ORBITALS

s orbitals

spherical
one occurs in every principal energy level
SHAPES OF ORBITALS

p orbitals

dumb-bell shaped
three occur in energy levels except the first
SHAPES OF ORBITALS

d orbitals

various shapes
five occur in energy levels except the first and second
ORDER OF FILLING ORBITALS
PRINCIPAL SUB LEVELS
ENERGY
LEVELS 4f

INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS


4d
4
4p
4s

3d
3 3p
3s

2p
2
2s

1 1s

Orbitals are not filled in numerical order because the principal energy levels get
closer together as you get further from the nucleus. This results in overlap of sub
levels. The first example occurs when the 4s orbital is filled before the 3d orbitals.
ORDER OF FILLING ORBITALS
PRINCIPAL SUB LEVELS PRINCIPAL SUB LEVELS
ENERGY ENERGY
LEVELS 4f LEVELS 4f

INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS


4d 4d
4 4
4p 4p
4s 3d
4s
3d 3 3p
3 3p 3s
3s
2p
2
2p 2s
2
2s

1 1s 1 1s

Orbitals are not filled in numerical order because the principal energy levels get
closer together as you get further from the nucleus. This results in overlap of sub
levels. The first example occurs when the 4s orbital is filled before the 3d orbitals.
ORDER OF FILLING ORBITALS
PRINCIPAL SUB LEVELS PRINCIPAL SUB LEVELS
ENERGY ENERGY
LEVELS 4f LEVELS 4f

INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS


4d 4d HOW TO
4 4
4p 4p REMEMBER ...
4s 3d
THE FILLING ORDER
4s
3d 3 3p 1s
3 3p 3s 2s 2p
3s
3s 3p 3d
2p
2 4s 4p 4d 4f
2p 2s
2 5s 5p 5d 5f
2s
6s 6p 6d
7s 7p

1 1s 1 1s

Orbitals are not filled in numerical order because the principal energy levels get
closer together as you get further from the nucleus. This results in overlap of sub
levels. The first example occurs when the 4s orbital is filled before the 3d orbitals.
THE AUFBAU PRINCIPAL
4f This states that
4d ELECTRONS ENTER THE
4 LOWEST AVAILABLE
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p ENERGY LEVEL

3d The following sequence will


show the building up of the
4s
electronic structures of the
3 3p first 36 elements in the
periodic table.
3s
Electrons are shown as half
headed arrows and can spin
in one of two directions
2p or
2
2s
s orbitals
p orbitals
1 1s d orbitals
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
HYDROGEN
4d
4 1s1
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
Hydrogen atoms have one
3d electron. This goes into a
4s vacant orbital in the lowest
available energy level.
3 3p

3s
Aufbau
Principle
2p
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
HELIUM
4d
4 1s2
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
Every orbital can contain 2
3d electrons, provided the
4s electrons are spinning in
opposite directions. This is
3 3p based on...
3s PAULIS EXCLUSION
PRINCIPLE
The two electrons in a
2p helium atom can both go in
2 the 1s orbital.
2s

1 1s Aufbau
Principle
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
LITHIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s1
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
1s orbitals can hold a
3d maximum of two electrons
4s so the third electron in a
lithium atom must go into
3 3p the next available orbital of
higher energy. This will be
3s
further from the nucleus in
the second principal
energy level.
2p
2 The second principal level
2s has two types of orbital (s
and p). An s orbital is
lower in energy than a p.

1 1s Aufbau
Principle
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
BERYLLIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s2
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
Beryllium atoms have four
3d electrons so the fourth
4s electron pairs up in the 2s
orbital. The 2s sub level is
3 3p now full.
3s

2p Aufbau
2
Principle
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
BORON
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p1
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
As the 2s sub level is now
3d full, the fifth electron goes
4s into one of the three p
orbitals in the 2p sub level.
3 3p The 2p orbitals are slightly
higher in energy than the
3s
2s orbital.

2p Aufbau
2
Principle
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
CARBON
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p2
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
The next electron in
3d doesnt pair up with the
4s one already there. This
would give rise to
3 3p repulsion between the
similarly charged species.
3s
Instead, it goes into
another p orbital which
means less repulsion,
2p lower energy and more
2 stability.
2s

HUNDS RULE
OF
1 1s
MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
NITROGEN
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p3
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
Following Hunds Rule,
3d the next electron will not
4s pair up so goes into a
vacant p orbital. All three
3 3p electrons are now
unpaired. This gives less
3s
repulsion, lower energy
and therefore more
stability.
2p
2
2s

HUNDS RULE
OF
1 1s
MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
OXYGEN
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p4
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
With all three orbitals half-
3d filled, the eighth electron in
4s an oxygen atom must now
pair up with one of the
3 3p electrons already there.
3s

Aufbau
Principle
2p
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
FLUORINE
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p5
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
The electrons continue to
3d pair up with those in the
4s half-filled orbitals.

3 3p

3s

2p
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
NEON
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
The electrons continue to
3d pair up with those in the
4s half-filled orbitals. The 2p
orbitals are now
3 3p completely filled and so is
the second principal
3s
energy level.
In the older system of
2p describing electronic
2 configurations, this would
2s have been written as 2,8.

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
SODIUM - ARGON
4d
4
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

With the second principal


4p energy level full, the next
electrons must go into the
3d
next highest level. The
4s third principal energy level
3 3p contains three types of
orbital; s, p and d.
3s
The 3s and 3p orbitals are
filled in exactly the same
way as those in the 2s and
2p 2p sub levels.
2
2s Aufbau
Principle

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
SODIUM - ARGON
4d
4
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

Na 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s1


4p
Mg 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2
3d
4s Al 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p1

3 3p Si 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p2

3s P 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p3


S 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p4
Cl 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p5
2p
2 Ar 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6
2s
Remember that the 3p
configurations follow Hunds
1 Rule with the electrons
1s
remaining unpaired to give
more stability.
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
POTASSIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s1
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
In numerical terms one
3d would expect the 3d
4s orbitals to be filled next.

3 3p However, because the


principal energy levels get
3s closer together as you go
further from the nucleus
coupled with the splitting
2p into sub energy levels, the
2 4s orbital is of a LOWER
2s ENERGY than the 3d
orbitals so gets filled first.

1 1s Aufbau
Principle
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
CALCIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
As expected, the next
3d electron pairs up to
4s complete a filled 4s orbital.

3 3p This explanation, using


sub levels fits in with the
3s position of potassium and
calcium in the Periodic
Table. All elements with an
2p -s1 electronic configuration
2 are in Group I and all with
2s an -s2 configuration are in
Group II.

1 1s Aufbau
Principle
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
SCANDIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d1
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
With the lower energy 4s
3d orbital filled, the next
4s electrons can now fill the
3d orbitals. There are five d
3 3p orbitals. They are filled
according to Hunds Rule -
3s
BUT WATCH OUT FOR
TWO SPECIAL CASES.
2p
2
2s HUNDS RULE
OF
MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
TITANIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d2
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
The 3d orbitals are filled
3d according to Hunds rule
4s so the next electron
doesnt pair up but goes
3 3p into an empty orbital in the
same sub level.
3s

HUNDS RULE
OF
2p MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
VANADIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d3
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
The 3d orbitals are filled
3d according to Hunds rule
4s so the next electron
doesnt pair up but goes
3 3p into an empty orbital in the
same sub level.
3s

HUNDS RULE
OF
2p MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
CHROMIUM
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s1 3d5
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
One would expect the
3d configuration of chromium
4s atoms to end in 4s2 3d4.

3 3p To achieve a more stable


arrangement of lower
3s energy, one of the 4s
electrons is promoted into
the 3d to give six unpaired
2p electrons with lower
2 repulsion.
2s

HUNDS RULE
OF
1 1s
MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
MANGANESE
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d5
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
The new electron goes into
3d the 4s to restore its filled
4s state.

3 3p

3s

HUNDS RULE
OF
2p MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
IRON
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d6
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
Orbitals are filled
3d according to Hunds Rule.
4s They continue to pair up.

3 3p

3s

HUNDS RULE
OF
2p MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
COBALT
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d7
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
Orbitals are filled
3d according to Hunds Rule.
4s They continue to pair up.

3 3p

3s

HUNDS RULE
OF
2p MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
NICKEL
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d8
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
Orbitals are filled
3d according to Hunds Rule.
4s They continue to pair up.

3 3p

3s

HUNDS RULE
OF
2p MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
COPPER
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s1 3d10
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
One would expect the
3d configuration of chromium
4s atoms to end in 4s2 3d9.

3 3p To achieve a more stable


arrangement of lower
3s energy, one of the 4s
electrons is promoted into
the 3d.
2p
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
ZINC
4d
4 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d10
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p
The electron goes into the
3d 4s to restore its filled state
4s and complete the 3d and
4s orbital filling.
3 3p

3s

2p
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
GALLIUM - KRYPTON
4d
4
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

The 4p orbitals are filled in


4p exactly the same way as
those in the 2p and 3p sub
3d
levels.
4s
3 3p

3s

HUNDS RULE
OF
2p MAXIMUM MULTIPLICITY
2
2s

1 1s
THE ELECTRONIC CONFIGURATIONS OF THE FIRST 36 ELEMENTS

4f
GALLIUM - KRYPTON
4d
4 Prefix with
INCREASING ENERGY / DISTANCE FROM NUCLEUS

4p 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d10


3d
Ga - 4p1
4s
Ge - 4p2
3 3p
As - 4p3
3s
Se - 4p4
Br - 4p5
2p
2 Kr - 4p6
2s
Remember that the 4p
configurations follow Hunds
Rule with the electrons
1 1s remaining unpaired to give
more stability.
H 1s1
ELECTRONIC
He 1s2
CONFIGURATIONS
Li 1s2 2s1 OF ELEMENTS 1-30
Be 1s2 2s2
B 1s2 2s2 2p1
C 1s2 2s2 2p2
N 1s2 2s2 2p3
O 1s2 2s2 2p4
F 1s2 2s2 2p5
Ne 1s2 2s2 2p6
Na 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s1
Mg 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2
Al 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p1
Si 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p2
P 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p3
S 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p4
Cl 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p5
Ar 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6
K 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s1
Ca 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2
Sc 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d1
Ti 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d2
V 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d3
Cr 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s1 3d5
Mn 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d5
Fe 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d6
Co 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d7
Ni 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d8
Cu 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s1 3d10
Zn 1s2 2s2 2p6 3s2 3p6 4s2 3d10
ELECTRONIC
CONFIGURATIONS
THE END