Bohr’s Theory of the Hydrogen Atom: A Selective Realist Interpretation

Conference paper
Part of the Studies in Applied Philosophy, Epistemology and Rational Ethics book series (SAPERE, volume 8)

Abstract

This paper proposes a reconstruction of 1913 Bohr’s theory of the hydrogen atom in the framework of the model-theoretic approach of theories. On the basis of this reconstruction, it is argued that Bohr’s theory is not internally inconsistent and can’t be qualified as fictitious. Then, a selective realist interpretation of Bohr’s theory can be defended according to which electrons occupy energy levels. An agnostic attitude however is recommended as far as the electron’s trajectories are concerned.

Keywords

Bohr Realism Model Fiction 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre Philosophie des Sciences et Sociétés (CEFISES)Institut Supérieur de PhilosophieLouvain-la-NeuveBelgium

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