One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The lowest energy state of an atom or other particle.
- ‘When an atom or ion is in its ground state, the electrons spend a lot more time close to the nucleus than they do when the atom is in an excited state.’
- ‘The ground state of a hydrogen atom is actually spherically symmetrical.’
- ‘Nuclear isomers are excited states that eventually decay to the ground state, mostly by gamma radiation.’
- ‘When that electron returns to its ground state, it releases energy as ultraviolet light, which is invisible.’
- ‘If they can be, usually it is because of radiation in the form of gamma rays, emitted by deformed nuclei as they revert to their normal shapes and lowest energy ground states.’
ground state/ˈɡround ˌstāt/
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