Solution to 1986 Problem 55

If electrons in a metal did not obey the Pauli exclusion principle, then a free electron Fermi gas would have the same kinetic energy distribution as an ideal gas of free electrons, and the average of it would be 3 k T/2. However, because no two electrons can occupy the same quantum state, they are forced to stack up in the state space, leading to a higher average kinetic energy. Therefore, answer (B) is correct.

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