Why are quantum numbers like an address?

Mar 16, 2018

They tell us where an electron is likely to be found.

Explanation:

To keep this quick and simple, I'll explain this briefly. For a clear and concise description, click here.

The quantum numbers are $n , l , {m}_{l} ,$and ${m}_{s}$.

$n$ is the energy level, and is also the electron shell, so the electrons will orbit there.

$l$ is the angular momentum quantum number, which determines the orbital's ($s , p , d , f$) shape, and is also where an electron is likely to be found, with a probability up to 90%.

${m}_{l}$ is the magnetic quantum number, and it determines the number of orbitals in a subshell.

${m}_{s}$ is the spin of an electron, and it is either up or down, with a spin of always $\frac{1}{2}$, and that means ${m}_{s} = \pm \frac{1}{2}$.