Nuclear physics is the study of the composition, behavior and interaction of atomic nuclei and their constituent parts.

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How do I calculate the energy produced in a beta decay reaction?

How do I calculate the energy produced in this reaction: Masses of subatomic particles: proton=1.007276u neutron=1.008665u electron=0.000549u Don't know if these are also relevant: Rest mass ...
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1answer
270 views

What was Feynman's famous formula?

In Welton(1983), Memories of Feynman, Welton mentions two formulas which he denotes as Feynman's Famous Formula (FFF) and FFF #2. Which famous formulas is he talking about? Is he maybe talking about ...
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8k views

Why build nuclear reactors on shorelines?

While not directly a physics question, I can't think of forum better capable of answering my question. In discussions over Japan's nuclear reactor situation the observation was made that reactors ...
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27 views

What is the “penetrability factor”?

I have read/heard this term a few times in nuclear physics papers. I'm guessing it has something to do with the Coloumb barrier of a nucleus. Could you maybe explain what this "penetrability factor" ...
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59 views

Estimation of the age of Earth

By calculating the ratio of U-238 to Pb - 209 the age of the earth can be estimated. Is it not a possibility that non radioactive lead already there formed during the birth of earth it self alter the ...
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1answer
48 views

What produces this 477 keV spectral line?

Question about a specific line on a gamma spectrum, here. Below is a background gamma spectrum observed by a Ge[li] detector. I've been able to identify all the lines with mostly certainty, apart ...
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Nucleon-meson interaction

Suppose interaction lagrangian between neutron-proton doublet and $\pi$-mesons: $$ \tag 1 L_{\pi pn} = \bar{\Psi}\pi_{a}\tau_{a}(A\gamma_{5} + B)\Psi , \quad \Psi = \begin{pmatrix} p \\ n\end{pmatrix} ...
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1answer
204 views

Proof of Bethe-Bloch stopping power

I want to prove the Bethe-Bloch stopping power formula but I don't know where to start. Any one can offer a book or paper? Related: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bethe_formula
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1answer
593 views

Americium battery

I was curious about a radioactive decay battery. My thought was to place an americium source from a smoke detector in a vacuum sealed borosilicate glass vessel. The Americium source would be "aimed" ...
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24 views

General Calculations on Rutherford Scattering [closed]

I was going through the book Fundamentals of Nanoscale Film Analysis and was trying to understand Rutherford scattering. Here is a problem from the book and it would be great if someone could let me ...
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1answer
158 views

nuclear physics- Energetics and Mechanics of Nuclear Reaction Homework

A sample of $^{24}_{12}\mathrm{Mg}$ is bombarded by a monoenergetic proton. If the resulting nucleus in a $^{24}_{12}\mathrm{Mg}(p,\gamma)$ reaction; $^{24}_{12}\mathrm{Mg}(p,\gamma)$ has its ...
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1answer
28 views

What does the g mean after the isotope given?

I'm familiar with notation such as Sc-44m standing for the meta stable state of Sc-44. What does Sc-44g mean? There are a few examples of this notation; here's one: ...
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Gadolinium poisoning vs Holmium Poisoning [closed]

Question here on the poisoning used around neutron spallation sources (or reactors, or any neutron source). I use poisoning in the sense of absorbing neutrons to prevent their release into the outside ...
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1answer
25 views

Gamma spectrum: Question about cross sections

If I have a gamma spectrum and I suspect that I should have an isotope, Fe-59 for example, present in the environment, I will then look here: ...
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0answers
29 views

Atomic/nuclear physics question

I've got what's probably quite a basic question here but I can't get things clear in my head. If I have a cobalt isotope like Co-56, is it possible for this to undergo Neutron capture (becoming ...
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3answers
345 views

Fission of U-235 produces Cs-137 along with…?

Question about Nuclear fission in general, here. If I have the fission of U-235 and I know that one of the products is Cs-137, is there a way of figuring out the other product? Should there be ...
2
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2answers
36 views

Fission producing Cs-137

This is I suppose quite a precise question about Nuclear fission. What produces, aside from U-235, via a fission process, Cs-137? Does any isotope of Actinium, for example, undergo a fission process ...
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1answer
20 views

Gamma Spectroscopy - Why no Intensity level for Neutron Capture?

I'm undertaking a bit of work looking at a Background Gamma Spectrum. On the spectrum, I have a clear, tall line at 834 KeV. I have a PDF file of a table of Gamma Spectra (ordered in energy) from ...
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3answers
54 views

How much energy is released from the splitting of a single hydrogen atom?

My question is a fairly simple one that I cant seem to find on Google: How much energy, in both technical and laymans' terms, is released from the splitting of a single hydrogen atom?
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2answers
143 views

Matter to energy conversion

Okay so I have a question, during a nuclear explosion or particle/antiparticle annihilation, matter is converted into energy. How do I determine if a from a explosion will come lets say a small ...
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1answer
109 views

What is the difference between zero background radiation and field background radiation in Nuclear Physics measurements?

Can someone please explain the difference between these two terms (Zero Background Radiation and Field Background Radiation) used in radiometric prospecting measurements?
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2answers
127 views

What is meant by mass defect of a single neutron or a single proton?

As per my understanding The mass defect of a nucleus represents the mass of the energy binding the nucleus, and is the difference between the mass of a nucleus and the sum of the masses of the ...
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1answer
19 views

Why do I not observe single/double escape peaks for K-40

A question on gamma spectrometry here. If I'm looking at a background gamma spectrum with a big peak at 1460KeV (approximately 180 counts) and I attribute this peak to the presence of K-40, should I ...
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1answer
21 views

Should I observe single/double escape peaks for all energies above 1022 keV

I have already asked a question similar to this, but that question was specifically relating to the case of K-40. I'm going to generalize it to any case My question is to do with the field of gamma ...
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0answers
12 views

How to choose which elements to use when synthesizing an ultra-heavy element?

I've been told that synthetic ultra-heavy elements are produced by bombarding a light nucleus into a heavy one, and that several combinations are (at least in theory) possible, as long as the sum of ...
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1answer
27 views

Nuclear decay of V-48

I have a question on the "decay" of Vanadium-48. The reason it's in inverted commas is because I'm not sure whether decay is the right word. Basically what I'm trying to work out is whether it's ...
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Where does the energy from a nuclear bomb come from?

I'll break this down to two related questions: With a fission bomb, Uranium or Plutonium atoms are split by a high energy neutron, thus releasing energy (and more neutrons). Where does the energy ...
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3answers
128 views

Are there more photons than nuclei within the Sun?

Are there more photons than nuclei within the Sun? Is there a good way to estimate what the ratio would be?
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1answer
24 views

Can a light element with excited nucleus undergo internal conversion

Internal conversion occurs when an excited nucleus ejects a low level electron from the first 2 low energy shells such as a k shell electron instead of emitting gamma when returning to ground state. ...
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1answer
132 views

Question on spin-orbit interaction

When you study the spin-orbit interaction in quantum mechanics, even for a simple hydrogen atom, you find only the electric field in the nucleus reference system, while in the electron reference ...
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1answer
14 views

Are Fe56 or Ni56 the fission products of any binary reactions?

I'm curious as to if there is some combination of a fusion and fission event simultaneously occuring that would only produce 56 nucleon number nuclides. Such that the net energy out of the fusion ...
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2answers
67 views

Why isn't spent nuclear fuel used as a heat source? [closed]

We all know spent fuel rods taken out from a reactor core keeps generating tremendous amount of heat and needs to be kept cool by running cool water. It is also known that if cooling system fails ...
2
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1answer
64 views

Why do nuclear bomb explosions create an array of visible electric discharges in the form of lightening in the upper atmosphere?

I've seen videos on the internet, showing nuclear bomb test explosions, and there appears to be a large amount of visible lightening discharging numerous times over the development of the mushroom ...
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146 views

Is a Plutonium gun-type atomic bomb really “impossible”?

I caught a pretty well done 2 hour documentary on atomic bomb history yesterday on the local PBS station. In it, they go over the paths taken for design of the first bombs, including the Thin Man ...
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1answer
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Difference between scattering amplitude and scattering lenght

I'm studying neutron scattering theory and I noticed that one usually writes the scattered wave as a spherical wave: $$\psi \sim \frac{-b} {r}e^{ikr}$$ where $b$ is known as scattering lenght. From ...
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Mirror nuclei: accounting for the difference in mass between nuclei

I was wondering if anyone here could guide me in the right direction with respect to the following problem: Two nuclei are considered mirror nuclei if interchanging the neutrons and protons turns ...
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About the flow of current

Generally it is said that current is due to the flow of electrons; how can we make this claim? I mean, generally we say the atom contains a nucleus which consists protons (positively charged ...
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3answers
84 views

Can there be eternal stars?

the question is quite straightforward: Can there be stars that shine forever without ever collapsing nor growing? Do we know some really, really old stars? (whatever age that might be) I hope to ...
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3answers
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Does energy conservation not hold in fission and fusion processes?

I have read that during fission and fusion processes, there is some kind of equilibrium between the single nucleus and the disintegration products, so they are constantly being converted into each ...
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2answers
43 views

Are there hypothetical processes which allow the existence of a fission powered star?

I know this is impractical given the rarity of heavy fissile elements in the universe (contrary to the abundance of fusion friendly elements like hydrogen), but is there any process via which a ...
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1answer
40 views

Ground state of 113Sn from shell model

The shell model predicts that the ground state of 113Sn with 63 neutrons would have J=5/2+. But the ground state is taken to be 1/2+. What is the reason behind that? Has it got something to do with ...
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landau distribution as a model of charge deposition in silicon detector

I am would like to know if it is any explanation why the charge collected by the detector can is model by the Landau distribution. Is it any deeper explanation instead of "it is working" ? I look ...
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2answers
34 views

One Pion Exchange Potential properties for a two-nucleon system

I'm going through my Nuclear Physics book, and has come across a section called "Properties of OPEP for the two-nucleon system". It start out by considering the n-p system in a singlet spin state ...
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3answers
66 views

Why is isospin so useful?

I'm currently reading about isospin in nuclear physics, and I know how to calculate it, and all the math, but I'm actually not sure WHY it is so useful? Can anyone come with some examples where not ...
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2answers
794 views

What is the exact function of neutrons $N(Z)$?

Has the number $N(Z)$ of neutrons in a nuclei as a function of the number $Z$ of protons been fully understood? Beside being ballast which makes the nucleus heavier, what determines the number of ...
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43 views

What actually remains after a proton-proton collision?

I have read that according to the kinetic energy of protons new particles can be created (pions, antiprotons etc) along the existing 2 protons or original protons can be tranformed into hundreds of ...
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4answers
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Why do electrons occupy the space around nuclei, and not collide with them?

We all learn in grade school that electrons are negatively-charged particles that inhabit the space around the nucleus of an atom, that protons are positively-charged and are embedded within the ...
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1answer
11 views

Will ionization energy be affected by screening effect?

It would be logical to think that the more electrons are ejected from an atom, the harder it is to eject more. I just learned about photoelectric effect experiment. The book is kinda telling me the ...
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7answers
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Why is there a scarcity of lithium?

One of the major impediments to the widespread adoption of electric cars is a shortage of lithium for the batteries. I read an article a while back that says that there is simply not enough lithium ...
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1answer
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Form factor for Proton

To find the charge distribution of proton , we study electron proton scattering and compute the form factor to find the cross section. The form factor comes out to be Fourier transform of charge ...