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Auger effect

(an atom's emission of an electron along with a photon)

The Auger effect is a means by which the single ionization of an atom occasionally results in a double ionization, i.e., two electrons lost instead of one. When an electron from an inner electron shell is knocked out (e.g., by a photon or passing electron), typically an electron from a higher shell soon descends to take its place, along with emission of a photon carrying away the surplus energy. However, in some cases, the Auger effect takes place: the same amount of energy is taken away through the ejection of another electron from a higher shell, generally also with the emission of a lower-energy photon to make up any energy difference.

The term Auger de-excitation refers to the reception of an electron in a low orbit resulting in the release of an electron in a higher orbit, thus reducing atomic excitation.

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