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Controlling Nuclear Fission Geometry 
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#1
Oct1613, 06:16 PM

P: 1

Hi everyone,
I'm an engineer and not a physicist, so forgive me if something sounds stupid. Question: Is it possible to know, which way products of nuclear fission (u235) will go? Imagine a sheet of single (or few) atom layer crystal of U235, that is irradiated by neutron source from the edge. Is it possible to predict where fission products will go? Is it better done experimentally or can be done theoretically or through simulation? 


#2
Oct1713, 08:36 AM

Thanks
P: 1,948

No, they will go randomly in any possible direction



#3
Oct1813, 03:18 AM

P: 381

Why? There are at least 2 factors that are not centrally symmetrical.
One is the direction of the incoming neutron. And the other... Uranium 235 has odd number of nucleons, so it has to be a fermion. In fact, the spin happens to be 7/2... so even if the neutron happens to have opposite spin (which it would not always have) the result would be at least spin 3. Wouldn´t the centrifugal force favour the fission products going somewhere along the equator of the U235 nucleus rather than towards its poles? 


#4
Oct1813, 12:21 PM

Mentor
P: 11,631

Controlling Nuclear Fission Geometry
Spin is not a rotation.
There might be some dependence on the spin direction, but as you don't control that spin direction, this does not change the result. 


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