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

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Mass of an Atom

So the mass deficit of an atom, denoted by $\Delta M(Z,A)$, is given by the following formula, $\Delta M(Z,A) = M(Z,A) - Z(M_{p} + m_{e}) -NM_{n}$ However since the rest mass of an electron is a lot ...
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Binding Energy of an atom

I would like to know if there is any difference between the binding energy of a nucleus and the binding energy of an atom and what exactly do we mean when we say Binding energy per nucleon.. Edit to ...
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32 views

What is the charge/matter distribution?

I am a mathematics student who is doing an introductory course in nuclear physics and since the course is rather elementary a lot of the definitions/derivations are skipped which makes it quite tough ...
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Can Dark Matter just be clumps of Neutrons

I was wondering about Dark matter, and it occurred to me that why could it not be just nuclei of Neutrons with no electron cloud. Is it possible for such things to exists. Can Neutrons bond to one ...
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nuclear fusion scaling with reactor size

Thinking about physics of thermonuclear fusion, I have always intuitive sense, that making fusion feasible is matter of reactor size. In other words I feel like: if the fusion reactor is big enough ...
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191 views

What is the difference between mass defect and mass deficit?

Is there any difference between the mass defect and the mass deficit? I have read that the mass defect of a nuclide is never negative and have also been told that the mass defect is the same as the ...
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290 views

Sommerfeld Parameter Confusion

In almost every reference site I can find, the Sommerfeld parameter $\eta$ is explicitly stated as $$\eta=\frac{Z_1Z_2e^2}{\hbar \nu}=\frac{Z_1Z_2e^2}{\hbar }\sqrt{\frac{\mu}{2E}}$$ Where $Z_1$ and $...
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102 views

Why can “slow” neutrons trigger fission?

My understanding of nuclear fission is that some massive isotopes such as uranium-235 are unstable and when split via fission there will be a "slow" neutron. This slow neutron will hit another ...
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58 views

What happens to the nucleus energy when it decays?

When an atom decays into another atom, what happens to the potential energy of the nucleus ? I think it will get more negative because, in general, through fission and fusion an atom tries to get a ...
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179 views

Why is energy released during decay?

Why is energy released when an atom decays into another atom, even though no energy is added? What does the mass defect mean? Is it because a nucleus which decays is unstable (proton/neutron = 1)? ...
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597 views

Could the LHC be used for fusion experiments? [duplicate]

Just looking at the beam energy and peak power for the LHC, 360 MJ and petawatts, respectively, dumped in about 100 µs, would this be sufficient to do useful fusion experiments?
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173 views

Stone vs. Atomic Bomb

What would do more damage, a B53, a 9 megaton uranium bomb, or a medium sized stone (2 kg) stone throw at 90% the speed of light. One thing that I know that will have to be considered is that fact ...
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147 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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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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55 views

The Internal Structure of A Nucleon [duplicate]

Just like, in a Bohr model, the atom has a particular structure, what is it like inside of a nucleon? Like, are there particular ways the quarks are arranged, and what about the binding energy that ...
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116 views

Electron Beam Welding equation

I am studying for a nuclear physics course right now and came across a question and topic that sparked my interest - Electron Beam Welding. As I understand it, the process heats up the metal by ...
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181 views

What is the energy threshhold to produce Cherenkov radiation?

I am in a nuclear course right now and am getting some misleading information from different sources. I am trying to figure out what the minimum total energy is that a proton must have in order to ...
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54 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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68 views

Are nuclear processes the only processes that release more energy than is input?

Are the nuclear processes of fission and fusion the only known processes or events that release more energy than is input to create those processes? I know I am being a little vague; I do not know the ...
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239 views

The semi-empirical formula and $E=mc^2$

The semi-empirical formula is used to find the binding energy of a nucleus. But if you know the mass of a nucleus and the number of neutrons and protons that this nucleus consists of (and you know ...
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376 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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318 views

Is a nuclear bomb in some sense a bullet travelling at the speed of light, but along time rather than along space?

Apologies if this is a silly or perhaps obvious question, but $E=mc^2$ just looks so much like classical kinetic energy (except for the factor of 2). So I'm thinking of the to-be-fissioned-away ...
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33 views

Electric Field inorder for Fusion to occur

If I want to do D-D -> He + n fusion in an electric field - what potential would I need? So I know the coulomb barrier is at $U=k^2 \frac{e^2}{10^{-15}} = 1.44 MeV$ This is when the strong force ...
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Electricity should deform the conductor then why doesn't it?

In electric current both negative particles and positive particles flow but in opposite directions. So why doesn't the conductor's shape deform because its particles are moving here and there? OR is ...
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204 views

PP Chain and CNO cycle relationship

At what temperature would the energy generation rates of the PP-Chain and CNO cycles be roughly equivalent? The dependences are so vastly different that I am wondering how and by what equations they ...
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102 views

Effective Coulomb barrier for deuteron

What is the effective Coulomb barrier for a Deuterium-deuterium fusion reaction? I am seeing temperatures of about $40 \times 10^7 K$ online, but have no idea how they are getting this. If we have $...
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109 views

What is the reduced width amplitude of an unstable state?

Particularly used in nuclear physics when describing the lifetime (i.e. partial decay width) of a resonant state (a.k.a resonance) is the term "reduced width amplitude". I have searched online, and ...
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503 views

Evidence that nuclei contain neutrons and protons (other than nucleons appearing if a nucleus is smashed)?

This may seem like a silly question, but I believe this to be very fundamental because the Standard Model of particle physics seems based on the axiom or assumption that neutrons and protons exist “as-...
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Is there a difference in the energy output of a nuclear fission reaction as opposed to fusion?

For example, if I split a Helium atom will I get the same amount of energy as when I fuse Hydrogen into Helium? If there is a difference, what will be the difference (in general not according to ...
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65 views

Do the nuclear reactions produced by different elements release different amounts of energy?

Does the nuclear reactions in an element like Uranium produce a different amount of energy than the nuclear reactions in Plutonium? I am not concerned with those elements in particular, they just seem ...
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47 views

What process happens in an IT nuclear decay?

I've been researching medical isotopes and alot of them decay by an IT path. Does anyone know what IT stands for? And what physical process is happening? Example: http://www.nndc.bnl.gov/nudat2/...
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120 views

What happens if the Russians decide to nuke the Kola borehole?

I recently came across research on the Kola Superdeep Borehole in Russia. It's one of the world's deepest at 12 km (7.5 mi) down. If someone decided to hoist a nuclear weapon all the way down and set ...
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71 views

What does it mean for a state to have a negative partial decay width?

I don't understand what it means when a particular decay mode has a negative partial decay width. I'm guessing the total decay width for a particular system must always be positive (now that wouldn't ...
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During Nuclear fusion why Atomic mass of β becomes zero?

I would like to know during Nuclear fusion how/why Atomic mass of β becomes zero. For example: two Protons fuse to form a deuterium nucleus. Please see the attachment. Thanks
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How nuclear fission works in power plants? [closed]

As per the laws we are not able to see atoms (atom is microscopic). Then how does the nuclear fission works? *. In nuclear fission, splitting atoms is a exact calculation or probability(like we 1 ...
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Orbital angular momentum of nucleus?

For nuclei, I know that it is the $J^{\pi}$ that is usually measured/calculated, which is the spin-parity. I don't see "orbital angular momentum" of a nucleus very often. Now my notion of spin vs. ...
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What's the difference between binding energy and separation energy?

My understanding of the two was as follows: the binding energy of a nucleus is, classically speaking, the energy needed to put together/take apart that nucleus completely (i.e. a measure of the strong ...
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Nuclear orbitals for nucleons [duplicate]

I'm currently taking a nuclear physics class, and of course, earlier courses taught me how electrons "moves" in orbits around the nucleus. In that case, it is their wave function that is spread out in ...
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833 views

Why are neutron absorption cross sections high at low incident energy?

For example, U-235 fission cross section looks like this: As I understand it, the resonances peaks correspond to discrete quantum states of the excited compound nucleus. As you go higher, the ...
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97 views

Radiometric dating calculation [closed]

If a sample of zircon initially contains no Lead, find an expression for the ratio $$\frac{N_U}{N_{Pb}}$$ as a function of time? How do I do simplifications from this? Do I just go: $$\frac{N_U}{N_{...
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Why does fusion stop at iron when nickel is most tightly bound?

My understanding is that stellar fusion naturally stops at iron because it is energetically unfavourable to grow the nucleus further. But iron is only the third most tightly-bound nucleus, nickel is ...
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Given the quadrupole moment of the nucleus as Q, is it possible to find the order of magnitude of the dimensions of the nucleus?

Given the quadrupole moment of the nucleus as Q, is it possible to find the order of magnitude of the dimensions of the nucleus? ( order of magnitude means approximate value to the powers of ten)
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Why does the nuclear volume scale (roughly) linearly with number of nucleons?

As far as I know, it is the fermi repulsion that gives a collection of protons or neutrons its finite size. But this only acts on indistinguishable fermions. If the protons and neutrons do not repel ...
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Spin orientations

The concept of spin is purely a quantum mechanical effect, it is restricted to given values in given orientations. If hypothetically spin were a classical concept yet still of a fixed value, would its ...
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100 views

Pair production with nucleus

I've seen in other questions that pair production is not possible in vacuum, i.e. it needs a nucleus or something massive in order for conservation of momentum to hold. I've seen the derivation of ...
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229 views

How long remains a boron control rod?

I was wondering today, how long boron control rods remains in a nuclear power plant? When a boron atom absorbs two neutrons, it becomes the unstable isotope boron-12 and and the boron nuclei starts ...
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Arrangement of neutrons and origins

I my physics textbook, it is given that atom consists of protons and neutrons. But my question is that how are they arranged in a nucleus of a heavy atom such as uranium?
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219 views

electrons inside nucleus and uncertainty principle [closed]

State the assumptions of the proton-electron model of the nucleus. Show that if one uses the Heisenberg uncertainty relation to estimate the speed of an electron inside a nucleus with a diameter of ...
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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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Spin and parity transition levels gamma radiation

Just a quick question regarding spin and parity. I am studying nuclear physics and I am just a tad confused with a concept about gamma radiation. Say I have ${^{20}_{10}Ne}$ And the lowest electric ...