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 can someone explain fission to me
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Dik-Dik Van Dik
Skeptic Friend

United Kingdom
76 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2005 :  20:20:47  Show Profile Send Dik-Dik Van Dik a Private Message
erm, i feel quite stupid asking this but at school im pretty sure they taught us one thing at GCSE and a different thing at A level. At first we were taught that a matter energy conversion was going on, then at a level we were taught it was a release of binding energy or strong nuclear force. Well it has to be one or the other right? So i was checking online and found this site:

http://www.atomicarchive.com/Fission/Fission1.shtml

Which says:
quote:
When a nucleus fissions, it splits into several smaller fragments. These fragments, or fission products, are about equal to half the original mass. Two or three neutrons are also emitted.

The sum of the masses of these fragments is less than the original mass. This 'missing' mass (about 0.1 percent of the original mass) has been converted into energy according to Einstein's equation.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fission

But this site says:

quote:
In physics, fission is a nuclear process, meaning it occurs in the nucleus of an atom. Fission is when the nucleus splits into two or more smaller nuclei plus some by-products. These by-products include free neutrons and photons (usually gamma rays). Fission releases substantial amounts of energy (the strong nuclear force binding energy).


Can someone explain exactly what happens because these watered down exaplanations are only confusing the issue.


Sorry its not really pseudo science, but didn't know wherre else to post it. Plus thhere seems to be some kind of contradiction

DARWIN 3:16
"The simple believeth every word." - Proverbs 14:15

woolytoad
Skeptic Friend

313 Posts

Posted - 05/12/2005 :  22:22:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send woolytoad a Private Message
Both are correct. Perhaps this is useful to you:

quote:
The strong interaction acts between two quarks by exchanging particles called gluons.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strong_interaction

BTW, quarks are what neutrons and protons are made of. I can't really think of a better explanation than those you quote though. Most of my physics studies were in computational methods and optics.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26013 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2005 :  04:03:57   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Dik-Dik Van Dik

Plus thhere seems to be some kind of contradiction
There is no contradiction. E=mc2 The strong nuclear force released is equal to the difference in mass times the square of the speed of light.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
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Dik-Dik Van Dik
Skeptic Friend

United Kingdom
76 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2005 :  05:59:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dik-Dik Van Dik a Private Message
Ok i think i'm confused because isn't the strong nuclear force, or binding energy, already energy before the reaction? if its just released, then what exactly turns from matter to energy?

DARWIN 3:16
"The simple believeth every word." - Proverbs 14:15
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26013 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2005 :  10:23:45   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
Nothing. Matter is energy, and vice versa. The strong nuclear force has mass. If you add up the rest masses of two protons and two neutrons, you'll find the total to be slightly less than the mass of a Helium nucleus. The difference in mass reflects precisely the amount of energy (via E=mc2) tied up in binding the nucleus together.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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R.Wreck
SFN Regular

USA
1191 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2005 :  14:41:09   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send R.Wreck a Private Message

quote:
Can someone explain exactly what happens because these watered down exaplanations are only confusing the issue.



This page is a pretty good explanation. It also shows why you need heavy elements for fission to release energy, and light elements for fusion to release energy. Hope that helps.

The foundation of morality is to . . . give up pretending to believe that for which there is no evidence, and repeating unintelligible propositions about things beyond the possibliities of knowledge.
T. H. Huxley

The Cattle Prod of Enlightened Compassion
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