Can you gurus help me understand in a qualitative way the nature of the Coulomb barrier as it applies to alpha decay? I can intuitively appreciate the Coulomb barrier as it applies to an incoming charged particle, but resources I have been reading apply the same term to the barrier felt by alphas, within the nucleus, inhibiting emission. I would have thought that any barrier that must be overcome by an alpha trying to escape would derive from the dominance of the strong force, binding the alpha to the nucleus, over the Coulomb force of the protons trying to push the alpha out. So, what am I missing here? By the way, thanks for a great forum.