Atomic orbital

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The shapes of the first five atomic orbitals: 1s, 2s, 2px, 2py, and 2pz. The colors show the wave function phase. These are graphs of ψ(x,y,z) functions which depend on the coordinates of one electron. To see the elongated shape of ψ(x,y,z)2 functions that show probability density more directly, see the graphs of d-orbitals below.

An atomic orbital is a mathematical function that describes the wave-like behavior of either one electron or a pair of electrons in an atom. This function can be used to calculate the probability of finding any electron of an atom in any specific region around the atom's nucleus. The term may also refer to the physical region where the electron can be calculated to be, as defined by the particular mathematical form of the orbital.

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