Quantum Periodic Table « Rama Hoetzlein

Quantum Periodic Table

Quantum Periodic Table of the Elements

R. Hoetzlein (c) 2007-2009

Atoms are incredibly complex. This periodic table shows the atomic elements according to Quantum Theory. While classical mechanics presents an unrealistic, simplified view of the atom, by visually superimposing the probability orbitals of the quantum Schrodinger Equations, a more complex picture of the atom may be revealed. The Quantum Periodic Table thus begins to uncover and visualize the complexity of the sub-atomic world.

Unlike the classical model of electrons speeding around a nucleus, an orbital represents the probability cloud of finding an electron at a given location in space. The solutions for a single electron are known, but those for many atoms are currently intractable. Thus, only the hydrogen atom and its isotopes (1 electron) can be solved directly. For all the other atoms, with multiple electrons, there are no analytical solutions, and expensive computations are needed. In this image, the elements are visualized through a simplification which combines many single-images of electron orbitals into colored composites. The result is a more detailed, subtle picture of the sub-atomic world.

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