Chemistry Practice Problems Bohr and Balmer Equations Practice Problems Solution: What is the smallest wavelength in the Balmer's se...

Solution: What is the smallest wavelength in the Balmer's series?

Problem

What is the smallest wavelength in the Balmer's series?

Solution

We can determine the smallest wavelength, λmin in the Balmer series using the Balmer Equation shown below:


1λmin=R×1nf2-1ni2

where: 

λmin  = wavelength, m at the highest initial principal energy level: ↑ni ↓λ

R = 1.0974 x 107m-1 (Rydberg Constant)      **value can be found in textbooks or online 
ni = initial principal energy level  
nf = final principal energy level = 2 for Balmer Series 


Recall that for the Balmer series the final principal energy level nf is always = 2. 

The smallest wavelength, λmin will be the minimum wavelength corresponding to the highest initial energy level, ni possible or approaching infinity,  (a symbol used to denote a super high number)  for a Hydrogen atom.

Recall that the highest transition releases the highest energy, E.

Energy, E is inversely proportional to the wavelength, λE, niλ


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