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Homework Help: Binding energy

  1. Aug 26, 2010 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    What is the binding energy of 12C ? (the 12 is meant to be the nucleon number of C)

    2. Relevant equations

    E=mc^2

    3. The attempt at a solution

    I am not sure how to calculate the mass defect. Do i take into consideration of the protons, electrons and neutrons?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 26, 2010 #2
    Binding energy= (mass of the total no of protons and the nucleus - mass of the atom itself)/c^2.
     
  4. Aug 26, 2010 #3
    Thanks but why is electrons not involved here?
     
  5. Aug 26, 2010 #4
    It depends on whether the question is referring to the atom or nucleus.
    The binding energy of a nucleus would just involve the nucleons, whereas the binding energy of the atom would involve the electrons as well.
     
  6. Aug 26, 2010 #5
    thanks and in this case, how do i know if the question is referring to the carbon nucleus or the carbon atoms?
     
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