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Nuclear Physics

Topic Review on "Title":

Atomic Number: 
The number equal to the number of protons in an atom that determines its chemical properties. Symbol: Z

Atomic Mass:
The mass of an atom expressed in atomic mass units.

Strong (nuclear) Force:
A fundamental force that is associated with the strong bonds between quarks and other subatomic particles.

Weak (nuclear) Force: 
One of the four fundamental forces that is associated with nuclear decay.

 Binding Energy:
The energy needed to separate the constituent parts of an atom or nucleus.

Mass Defect:
The difference between the mass of an atom and the sum of the masses of its individual components.

Mass-Energy Equivalence: 
All mass represents an equivalent amount of energy. 1 amu = 931 MeV.

Emission of radiation as a consequence of a nuclear reaction, or directly from the breakdown of an unstable nucleus.

 Half Life: 
The time required for half of the nuclei in a sample of a specific isotope to undergo radioactive decay.

Alpha Particle:
A positively charged helium nucleus (consisting of two protons and two neutrons).

Beta Particle:
An energetic electron produced as the result of a nuclear reaction or nuclear decay.

Gamma Particle/Ray:
Very high frequency electromagnetic radiation emitted as a consequence of radioactivity.

The process whereby one item splits to become two.

Rapid Study Kit for "Title":
Flash Movie Flash Game Flash Card
Core Concept Tutorial Problem Solving Drill Review Cheat Sheet

"Title" Tutorial Summary :

This tutorial specifically describe the structure and behavior of the atomic nucleus.  The nucleus is composed of neutrons and protons.  Obviously the similarly charged protons repel each other, but nuclear forces usually overcome that tendency and the nucleus is kept intact.  However, sometimes that repulsion is too great and the nucleus crumbles apart.  This is the process of radioactivity.  Alpha, beta, and gamma are the three types of nuclear radioactivity.  Each has different properties.  A nucleus may also break apart into roughly two equal pieces, this is the process of nuclear fission. 

Tutorial Features:

Specific Tutorial Features:

  • Animations depicting nuclear processes like fission and radioactivity.
  • Step by step analysis of an example of the concepts of binding energy and mass defect.

Series Features0:

  • Concept map showing inter-connections of new concepts in this tutorial and those previously introduced.
  • Definition slides introduce terms as they are needed.
  • Visual representation of concepts
  • Animated examples—worked out step by step
  • A concise summary is given at the conclusion of the tutorial.

"Title" Topic List:

Nuclear composition

  • Notation
  • Forces
  • Binding energy
  • Mass defect
  • Isotopes

Radioactive decay

  • Alpha decay
  • Beta decay
  • Gamma decay
  • Nuclear equations
  • Examples of nuclear equations

Half life

  • Decay constant
  • Decay formula and examples

Applications of nuclear science

See all 24 lessons in calculus physics, including concept tutorials, problem drills and cheat sheets:
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