HSC Together > Year11 > Examining Energy Levels


Examining Energy Levels

Spectral Evidence for Energy Levels

This post will go through a practical about examining energy levels for Prelim Chemistry.

Topic: Atomic Structure and Atomic Mass

  • Investigate energy levels in atoms and ions through:
    •  Collecting primary data from a flame test using different ionic solutions of metals
    •  Examining spectral evidence for the Bohr model and introducing the Schrödinger model


How can we look at Energy Levels?

In school, you have probably done a practical called the flame test. The flame test involves spraying a cation solution over a safety flame and observing what colour is emitted, and different metal cations will result in different flame colours.

The basis for this practical are the energy levels in an atom. Because there exist energy levels, valence electrons in lower energy levels can go to higher energy levels (an excited electron) when energy is inputted (such as through a flame). When the electron then goes back to its original energy level, the energy is released in the form of light which can be coloured for certain metal ions.

This video will go through the flame test in a little more detail.


This video explores why different metals may burn different colours.



Looking at the Flame Test in Practice

This video demonstrates some results you may get for a flame test.


Evidence for Atomic Models

This video relates spectral observations and evidence for the Bohr Model.


As explained in the previous post, the Bohr Model is not an accurate representation of what an atom actually looks like, it is good at conveying the existence of energy levels however there is a more accurate model called the Schrodinger Model. This video will take you through a bit more about that.