Investigation: Wave mechanical View of the Hydrogen Atom

Section 5.1 Lab
Honors Chemistry
Quantum Mechanical Model of the Atom
Purpose: To be able to visualize the quantum mechanical model of an atom
1. Put your target on the floor.
2. Drop your pencil from a height of about 1-meter (waist high) onto the target. Try to
hit the CENTER by aiming at the center of the target. Repeat for a total of 100 trials.
Data Table:
Count the number of marks in each numbered area of the target. Record in your data
table as follows:
Number of Marks
Post Lab Questions:
1. Before you dropped the pencil, could you predict exactly where it would strike the
2. If you could not predict the exact spot where the pencil would hit the target, could
you predict the area within which it would hit?
3. Did your predictions change as you made more drops?
4. What does probability mean?
5. Make a rough sketch of a graph (number of marks on the y-axis vs. area number on
the x-axis) using the data collected. Sketch the graph in your lab notebook.
6. From your graph, which target area had the highest probability of being hit by the
7. How is the idea of electron clouds different from Bohr’s idea of atomic orbits?
Conclusion: If you were to repeat this experiment, would you expect similar results?
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