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Posted by Rich on November 2, 2000 21:08:09 UTC

Interesting stuff. It seems a little more obvious now. Things always are after you learn them.


So, the only way the electron could become part of the nucleus was by hitting it. But with so much energy in the early universe, chaos was the ruler so electrons flew about aimlessly. With electrons flying all over the place, some would whirl by a proton, not close enough to hit it, but certainly close enough to be "electrically" attracted to the proton. Instead of continuing past the proton, the electron sling-shoted itself into orbit around the proton or nucleus. There must have been a maximum distance the electron could be in order to be "caught" by the proton, the s-orbital. Because hydrogen only had one proton, once it caught an electron, it couldn't really get another one. But it really could hold that electron close. Then the helium atom, with two protons caught one electron more quickly because it would have a longer grasp for the electron. Then it'd grab a second. Or did the helium atom form by two hyrdogen atoms colliding? The two electrons would repulse each other and that s-orbital would move out a little further.
Lithium is confusing though. A difficult and rare atom at the time. Luck gave it three protons through collisions. Or did it? Was lithium formed by a three proton, three neutron nucleus or by a hydrogen and helium atom combining? Or three hydrogen atoms hitting each other? My concern is the birth of the p-orbital.

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