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Atomic orbitals: 4d

The shape of the five 4d orbitals. From left to right: (top row) 4dx2-y2 and 4dz2 (bottom row) 4dxy, 4dxz, and 4dyz. For each, the blue zones are where the wave functions have negative values and the red zones denote positive values.

For each atom, there are five 4d orbitals. These are labelled 4dxy, 4dxz, 4dyz, 4dx2-y2 and 4dz2. Four of these functions have the same shape but are aligned differently in space. The fifth function (4dz2) has a different shape.

Each 4dxy, 4dxz, 4dyz, and 4dx2-y2 orbital has eight lobes. There are two planar node normal to the axis of the orbital (so the 4dxy orbital has yz and xz nodal planes, for instance). The 4dz2 orbital is a little different and has two conical nodes. In addition, apart from the planar nodes, all five orbitals have a single spherical node that partitions off the small inner lobes. The higher d-orbitals (5d and 6d) are more complex since they have further spherical nodes.

The origin of the planar nodes becomes clear if we examine the wave equation which, for instance, includes an xy term in the case of the 4dxy orbital. Clearly when either x = 0 or y = 0, then we must have a node, and this by definition is the case for the yz and a xz planes.

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The Orbitron is a gallery of orbitals on the WWW

The OrbitronTM, a gallery of orbitals on the WWW, URL: http://winter.group.shef.ac.uk/orbitron/
Copyright 2002-2014 Mark Winter [The University of Sheffield]. All rights reserved.
Document served: Saturday 20th December, 2014