Difference Between Emission And Absorption Spectra

The emission and absorption spectra difference is provided here. These two topics are one of the most interesting concepts in physics. Learn their differences in-details given in the table provided below.

Difference Between Emission And Absorption Spectra

What is emission spectrum?

When energy is absorbed by electrons of an atom, electrons move from lower energy levels to higher energy levels. However, these electrons have to emit energy to return to their ground state from the excited state which is unstable. The frequencies of light emitted in such cases form the emission spectrum.

What is absorption spectrum?

On the other hand, an absorption spectrum is constituted by the frequencies of light transmitted with dark bands when energy is absorbed by the electrons in the ground state to reach higher energy states.

 Emission Spectra VS Absorption Spectra

The main difference between emission and absorption spectra is that an emission spectrum has different coloured lines in the spectrum whereas an absorption spectrum has dark coloured lines in the spectrum. More differences between absorption and emission spectrum are given below in a tabular column.

Emission Spectra Absorption Spectra
Produced when atoms release energy Produced when atoms absorb energy
Comprise of coloured lines in the spectrum Comprise of dark lines or gaps in the spectrum
Is in helpful in figuring out the composition of a certain matter Can be used to figure out the ability of certain objects to retian heat and its absorption level
The type of photons emitted is helpful in figuring out the kind of elements the substance is made of as each element radiates a different amount of energy and has a unique emission level The wavelengths of light absorbed is helpful in figuring out the quantity of substances in the sample.

Emission spectra can emit all the colours in an electromagnetic spectrum, while the absorption spectrum can have a few colours missing due to the redirection of absorbed photons. To know more differences like the difference between RTD and thermocouple, Visit BYJU’S.

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