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Nuclear Fusion as energy provider

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For ?-decay, unstable atom emits an ?-particle, this can also apply to ?-decay. To distinguish ?-decay and ?-decay, here is a number of characteristic of each of the decay: relative charge, relative mass, nature, range, material to stop, deflection in electric field and magnetic field. ?-emission ?-emission Relative charge +2 -1 Relative mass 4 0.00055 Nature 2 protons + 2 neutrons (Helium nucleus) Electron Range 5cm 6m Material to stop Paper Aluminium(5mm thick)[] Deflection in electric field [2] Slightly towards negative terminal Greatly towards positive terminal Deflection in magnetic field[2] Slightly upwards Greatly downwards As an example, Bismuth can decay into Thallium and Polonium by emitting ?- and ?-particle respectively. For ?-decay of Bismuth: For ?-decay of Bismuth: The example above can show ?-particle is Helium particle while ?-particle is electron. Radioactive decay is different from fission reaction. Radioactive decay Fission 1. unstable 1. absorb 1 neutron 2. emit ?/?/?- particle 2. oscillate 3. become other elements 3. unstable 4.Fission (split) 5. give out 3 neutrons Fission reactions differ from radioactive decay both in the way that the reaction must be started and in the type of products that are formed [1]. ...read more.


The proton number and the structure of the nucleus are changed when the electron reacts with it. [1] An unstable nucleus may become more stable through radioactive decay. Some heavy nuclei can also become more stable when they split into two smaller parts. This is called nuclear fission. For example, when a uranium-235 nucleus is bombarded by a neutron, it splits into two smaller nuclei. Two or three neutrons and a large amount of energy are released. Energy is released when light nuclei fuse together to form a heavier nucleus. This process is called nuclear fusion. For example, a deuterium nucleus ( H) can fuse with a tritium ( H) nucleus to form a helium-4 nucleus ( He), releasing a neutron and a large amount of energy. The following shows the concept of fusion. For nuclear fission, each fission reaction release 200 million eV (where 1 eV= 1.602?10-19J) [3]. By calculation, 200?106?1.602?10-19 =3.204?10-10 J For nuclear fusion, there are many combinations of fusion, while only 1 type of fusion will be considered, the typical fusion - deuterium nucleus ( H) ...read more.


In case of emergency, all control rods are moved in to shut the reactor. Fission Fusion Advantage Disadvantage Advantage Disadvantage -chain reaction can take place -highly radioactive used fuel -unlimited supply of fuel -uncontrollable -can be controlled -long half-lives -product of fusion is stable -requires high temperature -2 loops to avoid radioactive substances reach the turbine -formation of bi-products -product is non-radioactive -product with short half-lives Nuclear Fusion can be a good energy supply, however, there are some challenges that scientists are facing. Firstly, nuclear fusion is uncontrollable, once it is out of control, explosion of hydrogen bomb would occur. Secondly, it requires high and sustainable temperature to generate electricity or energy, it costs so much. Lastly, the fusion power station will be occupied for military use, which may lead a catastrophic war. Reference: 1. Articles(given) Lise Meitner Fusion - Powering the future? 2. Physics in Life Electricity, Magnetism and Atomic Physics - Longman S.S. Tong, K.S. Lam, S.C. Chiu P.176 - range in air P.177 - penetrating power P.178 - deflection of nuclear radiation in electric and magnetic field P.221-225 - Nuclear energy 3. Wikipedia Fusion - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fusion Fission - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fission Power Plant - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Fossil_fuel_power_plant 4. Advancing Physics AS P.172 - eV 5. Salters Chemical Ideas P.20 - properties of ?,? and ? emission ...read more.

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Response to the question

The candidate should have included an introduction about what they are going to look at because they launch into different properties and its hard to see what the relevance of this is from the start. The candidate answers the question ...

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Response to the question

The candidate should have included an introduction about what they are going to look at because they launch into different properties and its hard to see what the relevance of this is from the start. The candidate answers the question well, outlining fusion and relating it to the use of how it can be used in power stations. It also compares to fission, with well used diagrams.

Level of analysis

Decay is compared in an easy to read table which is good. The decay examples used are also good because they show an example of decay in action. A diagram would have been easier to follow. Radioactive decay should not have been compared to fission in a table as it makes the different properties hard to read as the rows do not match up into a common theme. Fusion is explained well with the aid of a few diagrams, it is also related to modern use with a diagram which is good to link to how fusion provides energy.

Quality of writing

References are given which is good but this should ideally be linked to each section of text. The grammar, punctuation and spelling are all done to a high level. Format is okay, but clearer subheadings would be good to identify each section.

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