Chemistry: The Central Science (13th Edition)

Published by Prentice Hall
ISBN 10: 0321910419
ISBN 13: 978-0-32191-041-7

Chapter 6 - Electronic Structure of Atoms - Exercises: 6.65c

Answer

The average distance from the nucleus of an electron in orbital $2s$ is smaller than that in orbital $3s$.

Work Step by Step

The radial extension of electrons increases for higher shells (greater value of $n$). That means the average distance from the nucleus of an electron in an orbital of lower shells is smaller than that in an orbital of higher shells. Orbital $2s$ are of the second shell ($n=2$). Orbital $3s$ are of the third shell ($n=3$). Therefore, the average distance from the nucleus of an electron in orbital $2s$ is smaller than that in orbital $3s$.
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