Cadmium: properties of free atoms

Cadmium atoms have 48 electrons and the shell structure is

The ground state electron configuration of ground state gaseous neutral cadmium is  [Kr].4d10.5s2 and the term symbol is  1S0.

Atomic spectrum


A representation of the atomic spectrum of cadmium.

Electronic configuration of neutral atomic cadmium

Electronic configuration of cadmium

The electronic configuration of cadmium.

Kossel shell structure of cadmium

The Kossel shell structure of cadmium.

Ionisation Energies and electron affinity

The electron affinity of cadmium is 0 kJ mol‑1. The ionisation energies of cadmium are given below.

Ionisation energies of cadmium
Ionisation energy number Enthalpy / kJ mol‑1

Effective Nuclear Charges

The following are "Clementi-Raimondi" effective nuclear charges, Zeff. Follow the hyperlinks for more details and for graphs in various formats.

Effective nuclear charges for cadmium
2s35.39 2p43.91  
3s30.84 3p30.69 3d33.61  
4s20.87 4p19.41 4d15.88 4f(no data)
5s8.19 5p(no data) 5d(no data)  
6s(no data) 6p(no data)  


These effective nuclear charges, Zeff, are adapted from the following references:

  1. E. Clementi and D.L.Raimondi, J. Chem. Phys. 1963, 38, 2686.
  2. E. Clementi, D.L.Raimondi, and W.P. Reinhardt, J. Chem. Phys. 1967, 47, 1300.

Electron binding energies

Electron binding energies for cadmium. All values of electron binding energies are given in eV. The binding energies are quoted relative to the vacuum level for rare gases and H2, N2, O2, F2, and Cl2 molecules; relative to the Fermi level for metals; and relative to the top of the valence band for semiconductors.
Label Orbital eV [literature reference]
K 1s26711 [1]
L I2s4018 [1]
L II2p1/23727 [1]
L III2p3/23538 [1]
M I3s772 [3]
M II3p1/2652.6 [3]
M III3p3/2618.4 [3]
M IV3d3/2411.9 [3]
M V3d5/2405.2 [3]
N I4s109.8 [3]
N II4p1/263.9 [3, one-particle approximation not valid owing to short core-hole lifetime]
N III4p3/263.9 [3, one-particle approximation not valid owing to short core-hole lifetime]
N IV4d3/211.7 [3]
N V4d5/210.7 [3]


I am grateful to Gwyn Williams (Jefferson Laboratory, Virginia, USA) who provided the electron binding energy data. The data are adapted from references 1-3. They are tabulated elsewhere on the WWW (reference 4) and in paper form (reference 5).


  1. J. A. Bearden and A. F. Burr, "Reevaluation of X-Ray Atomic Energy Levels," Rev. Mod. Phys., 1967, 39, 125.
  2. M. Cardona and L. Ley, Eds., Photoemission in Solids I: General Principles (Springer-Verlag, Berlin) with additional corrections, 1978.
  3. Gwyn Williams WWW table of values
  4. D.R. Lide, (Ed.) in Chemical Rubber Company handbook of chemistry and physics, CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida, USA, 81st edition, 2000.
  5. J. C. Fuggle and N. Mårtensson, "Core-Level Binding Energies in Metals," J. Electron Spectrosc. Relat. Phenom., 1980, 21, 275.

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