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Would the atomic absorption from FAA for Sulfur be from 3s2 -> 3p4 or 3p4 -> 4s0?

I think according to the electronic partition function, there would be zero electrons in the 4s0 state at the temperatures for ICP N = pe^(-E/kT), where p is the # of electrons in the state.

Perhaps I'm thinking about this wrong.

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    $\begingroup$ It is for the transition $\ce{3s^2 3p^3 4s -> 3s^2 3p^4 }$ of neutral sulfur. articles.adsabs.harvard.edu//full/1994A%26A...286..344R/… $\endgroup$ – MaxW Dec 23 '15 at 1:24
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    $\begingroup$ I whittled it down. The gist is that the notion now in my answer isn't sufficient to really define the electronic state since it doesn't give details for the spin coupling. $\endgroup$ – MaxW Dec 23 '15 at 1:31
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    $\begingroup$ Not necessarily. The excitation could be from the ground state to some other yet higher excited state. The higher state then decays first to state with 4s electron then decays to ground state from there. $\endgroup$ – MaxW Dec 23 '15 at 1:38
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    $\begingroup$ dah... we're talking AAS here. So yes the tube would emit that line and the free atom of sulfur would absorb it at that same wavelength. $\endgroup$ – MaxW Dec 23 '15 at 1:41
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    $\begingroup$ Yes. In coarse terms it is a transition (emission and absorption) between 3p and 4s. To completely define the transition though you need to consider all the spin coupling states. $\endgroup$ – MaxW Dec 23 '15 at 2:00

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