Difference Between Orbit and Orbitals

The difference between orbit and orbitals is important to understand for any budding chemistry student or even professionals in the field of chemistry. The important thing to understand is that they are different from one another. Even though they sound the same and it is quite possible for one to get confused with other, one should understand the key differences between one and the other. An orbit is the fixed path along which electrons revolve around the nucleus of the atom. Thus, all atoms particularly revolve in an orbit. Molecular orbital theory is important to understand here.

Difference between Orbit and Orbitals

An orbital on the other hand is simply the probable area where one can expect to find the maximum density of electron presence within an atom. An orbit on the other hand is simply present in a body with a certain mass, while an orbital exists for an electron as well as an atom.

Thus, these are the simple differences between Orbit and Orbitals. It is important to know the major differences, you can check out the differences between Orbit and Orbitals below:

Differences between Orbit and Orbitals
Orbit Orbitals
An orbit is the simple planar representation of an electron. An orbital refers to the dimensional motion of an electron around the nucleus in a three-dimensional motion.
It can be simply defined as the path that gets established in a circular motion by revolving the electron around the nucleus An orbital can simply be defined as the space or the region where the electron is likely to be found the most.
The shape of molecules cannot be explained by an orbit as they are non-directional by nature. The shapes of the molecules can be found out as they are directional by nature.
An orbit that is well-defined goes against the Heisenberg principle. An ideal orbital agrees with the theory of Heisenberg’s Principles.

Thus, these are the major differences between Orbit and Orbitals. It is important to know the key differences and if you liked this article, then download the BYJU’S app today! You may also want to check out the related articles below.


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