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Chadwick's discovery of the neutron - radiation

  1. Jul 24, 2011 #1
    Oh hello. I'm quite uncertain about one of the reasons for the discovery of the neutron. Apparently, the neutron is supposed to be the radiation released by alpha particles hitting Beryllium. When the radiation hits Paraffin wax, the paraffin wax releases protons. At first, people thought that this radiation was a special kind of gamma radiation. This, however, broke the conservation of energy.

    My question is - how does a neutron solve the conservation of energy and momentum problems that exist with gamma radiation?

    PS High school Student here, just so you are aware of your audience but I'll try my best.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 24, 2011 #2
    I wonder if it's possible to move this thread to the Atomic one? It may fit a little bit better there now I think of it.

    Thanks
     
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