Calculating energy in fusionby frazzle96 Tags: binding energy, coursework, energy, fusion, nuclear fusion 

#1
Nov313, 10:01 AM

P: 5

Hi,
I'm doing some coursework on nuclear fusion, and am trying to calculate the energy released by fusing a tritium and a deuterium atom together. I used the equation: ( Σ mass (reactants)  Σ mass (products) ) x 931.5 MeV/amu = Binding energy. and Deuterium + Tritium = Helium + neutron I know the value should be about 17.58 MeV, however when I did it it came out as about 18.1. The values I used are Triton: 3.0160492u , Deuteron: 2.0135532u , Helium nucleus: 4.0015061u and a neutron: 1.0086649u. Thanks in advance Frazer 



#2
Nov313, 10:09 AM

Sci Advisor
Thanks
P: 3,851

You're off by about 0.5 MeV, which is the mass of an electron. Are the values you quoted the mass of the atoms or the nuclei?




#3
Nov313, 10:21 AM

P: 5

ah, I think the value I used for tritium was the atomic mass rather than the mass of the nuclei... thanks very much!



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