Chemistry Practice Problems Bohr and Balmer Equations Practice Problems Solution:  What is the largest wavelength in the Balmer seri...

Solution:  What is the largest wavelength in the Balmer series?

Problem

 What is the largest wavelength in the Balmer series?

Solution

We can determine the largest wavelength, λmax in the Balmer series using the Balmer Equation shown below:


1λmax=R×1nf2-1ni2

where: 

λmax = wavelength, m corresponding to lowest principal initial energy level,   ↓nλ

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 largest wavelength, λmax will be the maximum wavelength corresponding to the lowest initial energy level, ni = 3  for a Hydrogen atom.  Recall that the lowest transition releases the lowest energy, E and will occur from n = 2 to n = 3 (next energy level).  

Energy, E is inversely proportional to the wavelength, λ↓E, ↓niλ


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