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New to chemistry; In my book it talks about electrons in atoms moving from one energy level or shell to another and denotes this by n. How does this exactly happen, do electrons move to different energy levels when they bond with different atoms? It also talks about something along the lines of photons. Also please explain ground level. It says Hydrogen is in ground level when n=1 but what about other atoms where n>1? For instance, carbons has electrons where n>1 does this mean all the electrons other than the first shell are NOT in ground level? Please explain in layman terms as Im not that fluent in this discipline.

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closed as too broad by Mithoron, Todd Minehardt, M.A.R., airhuff, Geoff Hutchison Feb 14 '18 at 20:20

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ You ask too many questions at once. The supposed answer is so long that nobody wants to write it, so have a comment instead. Electrons do not move to different levels when they bond with different atoms; nor do they remain on the same levels. Yes, it is complicated. Forget about bonds for now. Look at a single atom. Yes, some electrons of carbon are not on the level with n=1; they would like to go there, but the place is already occupied by other electrons. $\endgroup$ – Ivan Neretin Feb 13 '18 at 5:37
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Please explain in layman terms as Im not that fluent in this discipline.

Introduction: According to Bohr's model, an atom is surrounded by shells. They are depicted by $K,L,M,...$ and are denoted by $n=1,2,3,...$ respectively.

When an electron occupies ground state level, it means that the electron occupies the lowest energy state possible. Since the lowest energy occurs closest to the nucleus, each atom tries to occupy the lowest $n$ possible (while also satisfying the rule that in each shell the maximum number of electrons can only be $=2n^2$)

For instance, carbons has electrons where n>1 does this mean all the electrons other than the first shell are NOT in ground level?

No, note that different electrons have different ground levels. An electron may have ground level $n=2$. If it gained extra energy and moved to $n=3$, we would consider it to be in excited level now. But, an electron that was already in $n=3$ is not considered to be in excited level.

It also talks about something along the lines of photons.

Note that a photon with wavelength $\lambda$ has energy $E=\frac{hc}{\lambda}$. A photon beam (having several such photons) when incident on an atom can excite its electron to higher energy levels. You'll study this in detail in the chapter on "Atomic structure" (topic "Atomic spectra") in higher classes. Do not worry about this for now.

Do electrons move to different energy levels when they bond with different atoms?

This is a very complicated topic. It will unleash hybridiation, MOT, and too many other things. It's like opening a dam of Niagara falls. Please don't confuse yourself with bonds and excitation for now.


Note: this was a pretty dumbed-down explanation of what all you asked. None of it will actually hold true in higher sciences, but, it will work for the class you're in currently.

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