Difference between Fission and Fusion
The two types of nuclear reactions used to produce energy are fission and fusion. Both reactions present their differences and we will explain them to you below. Difference between Fission and Fusion
FISSION Difference between Fission and Fusion
This type of nuclear reaction occurs when the heavy nucleus of an atom separates or divides. It occurs by radioactive decay or by bombardment of subatomic particles known as “neutrons.”
Under unusual circumstances, the neutrons produced can split more nuclei of atoms; thus creating a rapid chain reaction. It is very common for nuclear power plants to exploit the fission process.
Nuclear fusion is a process in which the nuclei of atoms unite, that is, “fuse.” To achieve this, extremely high energy levels need to be achieved and the temperature required for this task is millions of degrees.
This reaction also releases a large amount of energy and is what occurs in the sun. Nuclear fusion is a stronger reaction than fission.
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Key differences between fission and fusion
- When fission occurs, the heavy nucleus of the atom splits, while in the case of fusion the nuclei of the atoms unite.
- Some elements with which nuclear fissions are usually produced are: uranium, strontium and krypton.
- Some elements with which fusions are usually caused are: hydrogen and helium.
- Fission reaction does not normally occur in nature while second one occurs in stars, such as the sun.
- The first one produces many highly radioactive particles while Few radioactive particles are produced by second reaction, but if a fission “trigger” is used, radioactive particles will result from that.