A. 7. What is the difference between fission and fusion? Where do they occur in the Universe? (Include human-made events and devices.) What elements are typical for fission? For fusion? Fission is the splitting of a nucleus. Spontaneous fission happens all of a sudden, randomly, when the nucleus decays and splits apart; this only happens to artificially produced isotopes, not in nature. Induced fission happens when the nucleus is hit by a neutron, which is absorbed, causing the nucleus to become unstable and thus to burst. This happens in nature, but also in nuclear reactors and weapons. Fission can happen to certain isotopes of elements such as Uranium, but not others. U235 is often used for nuclear fission reactions. Fusion is the coming together of particles. Other particles are often created in this process. For example, the energy of the sun comes from the fusion of four hydrogen nuclei; this makes helium, but also produces gamma rays, neutrinos, and positrons; these particles compose the energy of the sun. This type of fusion also
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This note was uploaded on 11/07/2011 for the course PHY 1020 taught by Professor Dennisduke during the Fall '11 term at FSU.