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ERIC Number: EJ1043290
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Oct
Pages: 3
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 15
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Spreadsheet-Based Program for Simulating Atomic Emission Spectra
Flannigan, David J.
Journal of Chemical Education, v91 n10 p1736-1738 Oct 2014
A simple Excel spreadsheet-based program for simulating atomic emission spectra from the properties of neutral atoms (e.g., energies and statistical weights of the electronic states, electronic partition functions, transition probabilities, etc.) is described. The contents of the spreadsheet (i.e., input parameters, formulas for calculating emission intensities, etc.) are in full view and are controllable by the student and instructor, and the result of changing temperature and line width on relative intensities can be observed in real time. Thorough descriptions of how to use the spreadsheet-based program, how to extract relevant quantum mechanical properties from the NIST Atomic Spectra Database, and how to create a new worksheet for an element of interest are also included. It is envisioned that the program will serve as a means for instructors to link atomic emission in the visible region of the electromagnetic spectrum, as in the flame test demonstration, to the theoretical concepts of statistical and quantum mechanics encountered in advanced physical and analytical chemistry courses.
Division of Chemical Education, Inc and ACS Publications Division of the American Chemical Society. 1155 Sixteenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 800-227-5558; Tel: 202-872-4600; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A