(Electron Shells)Will Graves


An electron shell may be thought of as an orbit followed by electrons around an atom's nucleus. The closest shell to the nucleus is called the "1 shell" (also called "K shell"), followed by the "2 shell" (or "L shell"), then the "3 shell" (or "M shell"), and so on further and further from the nucleus.
Shell Number
Maximum Number
of Electrons in the Shell
2 x 1 = 2
2 x 4 = 8
2 x 9 = 18
2 x 16 = 32
2 x 25 = 50

History of (Electron Shells)

The shell terminology comes from Arnold Sommerfeld's modification of the Bohr model. Sommerfeld retained Bohr's planetary model, but added mildly elliptical orbits (characterized by additional quantum numbers1 l and m) to explain the fine spectroscopic structure of some elements. The multiple electrons with the same principal quantum number (n) had close orbits that formed a "shell" of finite thickness instead of the infinitely thin circular orbit of Bohr's model.

Application of (Electron Shells)

(The Electron shells can help show the chemical properties of a atom.)

  1. Beiser, A. (1988). Physical Science (2nd Edition). New York, NY: McGraw Hill
  2. Kopfermann, Hans, and Wolfgang Finkelnburg. Physics of the Electron Shells. Wiesbaden: Office of Military Government for Germany, Field Information Agencies Technical, British, French, U.S., 1948. Print.

3. "How Do I Read an Electron Configuration Table?"

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