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Number of Electron Shells in an Element


I'm in Physical Science, which is basically breezing through the fundamentals of both Physics and Chemistry. We just started our Chemistry Unit and have been given our first assignment. I don't even understand the first problem, and most of them are pretty much asking the same thing!  ::)

"How many electron shells would be completely filled by a neutral atom of xenon? How many would be left over?"

The only guess I could come up with was 54, because that's the atomic number (which is the number of protons/electrons, right?). But then there wouldn't be any left I don't know what I missed in my notes!

If someone could better explain that concept for me, I'd very much appreciate it. ;D

Also, I'll probably be posting similar problems to this same thread to have you smart folks check my answers (once I get them), so I hope that's alright!

Donaldson Tan:
look up the electronic configuration of Xe at

any general chemistry textbooks will tell you the order of orbitals you should fill up to make up the electronic configuration.


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