CUBoulder PHYS 3070  Chemical versus Nuclear (5 pages)
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Chemical versus Nuclear
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Lecture Notes
 Pages:
 5
 School:
 University of Colorado at Boulder
 Course:
 Phys 3070  Energy and the Environment
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Chemical versus Nuclear Reminders Research Paper 1 due in class today October 31 Chemical reactions also release energy from mass energy conversion Homework 8 due next Wednesday However chemical reactions involve the orbital electrons and typical mass differences are very small Finish Reading Chapter 6 on Nuclear Energy Recall the 109 difference in energy Extra Credit 5 due next Friday Neutron Induced Fission Fermi first did it Lise Meitner and helpers figured out what was happening Fission Nuclear Explosion atomic bomb 3rd generation 2nd generation BOOM Ur 235 If don t get swallowed the 3 free neutrons can go induce more fission Chain reaction neutrons making fission that makes more neutrons that makes more fission that makes more neutrons that makes more fission that makes more neutrons that makes more fission that makes more neutrons that makes more fission that makes more 1st generation Uranium 235 or plutonium 100 generations per microsecond 2 x 2 x 2 x2 fissions each with LOTS of energy Each fission releases multiple neutrons Each of them can induce further fission reactions This means it is possible to have a chain reaction However one cannot allow too many neutrons to escape or be absorbed by other materials or there is not runaway reaction That is why one needs a critical mass which depends on the shape to keep the volume to surface area ratio large Reactors are designed to give steady self sustained fission They use the released neutrons to induce more fissions Bombs are designed to get exponential buildup 2 4 8 16 1 Manhattan Project First reactor built in 1943 in Chicago by Enrico Fermi under the football stadium My old office 6 floors above some of the original labs World War II project to design and build atomic weapons Starting in New York City in the basement of the Columbia University Pupin Physics Building First Chain Reaction Only certain heavy nuclei can be induced to fission easily Uranium 235 and Plutonium 239 are the most common Natural
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