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To measure the atomic hydrogen spectrum people often uses hydrogen gas tubes as light source. Since the gas in the tube is the molecule $H_2$ , why we obtain the spectrum of atomic hydrogen? My guess is that because the voltage is so high, so that the molecules are totally dissociated.
If you could give me some reference I would be grateful.

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  • $\begingroup$ Think thoroughly about possible answers to your questions and search for them before asking. Provide in the question elaboration what you already know, what you have thought about, what you tried to search for in textbooks and online resources, what you found, understood or not, where you failed. Elaborated questions attract elaborated answers and vice versa. Include in the question all eventually relevant circumstances to prevent wrong assumptions and requests for clarifications. Questions without explicit own effort are not very welcome, and may be closed. $\endgroup$ – Poutnik Nov 27 '20 at 9:40
  • $\begingroup$ Consider the effect of accelerated ions and relative intensity of atomic and molecular spectrum. $\endgroup$ – Poutnik Nov 27 '20 at 9:42
  • $\begingroup$ Of course, $\ce{H2}$ is dissociated into $2$ $\ce{ H}$ atoms, but this dissociation is not total. It is not necessary. Please think before asking ! $\endgroup$ – Maurice Nov 27 '20 at 10:31
  • $\begingroup$ why is not necessary? $\endgroup$ – amilton moreira Nov 27 '20 at 10:37
  • $\begingroup$ @amiltonmoreira, if you have 10^9 molecules and 1 ion, does that prevent the ion from emitting (or absorbing) radiation?? $\endgroup$ – DrMoishe Pippik Nov 27 '20 at 19:57

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