What is the difference between nodal surfaces and nodal planes?

1 Answer

Answer:

Here's my explanation.

Explanation:

A nodal surface is a region of space in which the probability of finding an electron is zero.

There are different types of nodal surfaces.

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For example. the diagram above compares the electron probability densities for the hydrogen #"1s, 2s"#, and #"3s"# orbitals.

Note that all three are spherically symmetrical.

However, for all #"s"# orbitals except the #"1s"#, there are spherical regions of zero electron probability (nodes).

We could call them spherical nodes or spherical nodal surfaces. They are part of a more general set called the radial nodes.

Also, all #"p"# orbitals have areas of zero electron probability in the #xy, xz#, or #yz# planes.

http://chemwiki.ucdavis.edu/

We call these nodal planes or nodal planar surfaces. They are part of a more general set called the angular nodes.

All #"p"# orbitals except #"2p"# have spherical nodes as well as nodal planes.

For example, a #"3p"# orbital has both a spherical and a planar nodal surface.

https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com

A #"4p"# orbital has a nodal plane and two spherical nodal surfaces.

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#d# and #f# orbitals have even more complicated-looking nodal surfaces.