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Atomic orbitals: 5g electron density
Schematic plot of the 5gxy(x2-y2) and 5gx4 + y4. Blue represents negative values for the wave function and red represents positive values.
The line graph on the left is a plot of values along along the x axis. The surface plot is in the xy plane, with the x direction from right to left, and the y direction from back to front.
The "surface" of the orbital represents points for which the electron density for that orbital is the same - an isosurface. By choosing different values of electron density, denoted by the bar moving up and down on the line plot or by the moving plane on the surface plot, then the size of the 3d plot changes. This plot also shows that the magnitude of the electron density for the inner lobes is high so that if we choose a high threshold value (when the bar is high), then we only see one or more of the inner lobes in the three-dimensional plot. Only by moving the bar down sufficiently far does the main outer lobe become visible.
All values are of necessity not negative since the square of any real number cannot be less than zero.
The electron density functions for the 5gxy(x2-y2) and 5gx4 + y4 orbitals are identical in appearance and differ only in direction. One can be mapped to the other by a 22.5° rotation about the z-axis. This is best seen when viewing both together.
Links to 5g electron density functions
The Orbitron is a gallery of orbitals on the WWWThe OrbitronTM, a gallery of orbitals on the WWW, URL: http://winter.group.shef.ac.uk/orbitron/
Copyright 2002-2015 Prof Mark Winter [The University of Sheffield]. All rights reserved.
Document served: Sunday 16th February, 2020