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Ni-60 to Fe-56 + a (why not??) Binding energy topic

  1. Jun 20, 2015 #1
    Neodynium-144 is the lightest nuclide with -observed- alpha decay (it decays to Se-140 if I'm not wrong), but I'm using it just an example I don't care about Neodynium, rather Nickel, which is my favourite element by far (yes, I know its somewhat freak) and I've been smashing my brains reading post and more post again related to stability and stuff like that. Notice I'm talking like a noob but I'm not. I know how does the BE works, know why Iron and Nickel are the 'most stable' elements etc so focus (please) on the following question::

    According to Wiki (and more pages/also personal opinion) alpha decay can occur in any nuclide heavier than iron-56 and 58 (since the fact no one -except- Ni-62 has greater BE and thus the decay is enabled energetically), so what prevents some reactions like the Ni-60 >>> Fe-56 + a to occur???

    Another example: Cu-63 >>> Co-59 + a (since the fact Co-59 has greater BE than Cu-63)

    Also notice I'm talking about "post-Iron" elements, whose BE is decreasing as the Z number increases. No pre-Iron stable isotopes can undergo alpha decay (theoritically) since the fact they're not only light but also their BE is superior to the lighter pre-step isotopes in the "burning-star" event chain. I mean... for example, Si-28 shouldn't never decay into Mg-24 as it would actually require an energy -induced- particle or beam to split to, so in this sense Si-28 is inmune to alpha decay...

    But what about the elements which are heavier than Iron? Ovbiously, there are lots of "stable" nuclides heavier than Fe in our world, but... aren't they prone to alpha decay through the mechanism I explained before?? (yes, I know beta and EC are more common but please focus on the so-called "stable" even-even nuclides like i.e. Germanium-72) Remember I'm talking about -natural- decay with the pass of time. Wikipedia states that Ni-60 is 100% stable but I don't really know why, considering it could release an alpha particle in order to gain some extra binding energy in the process (as the daughter's BE is higher), my personal opinion is that, even if it can't be measured as today, it can occur (just would take millions of millions of millions of years to do so) and I don't like that, because I like nickel (freak mode on :) I assume that at the very end of everything (also assuming protons doesn't decay - but forgot that detail please its not related to my question) all solid mass is gotta be Ni-62, Fe-56, Fe-58 and the pre-iron elements (as they are too light to decay - also there's no decaying method to do so specially alpha one).... Wikipedia also states that alpha decay is -theoritically- possible for any element heavier than Iron/Nickel and it has other articles stating that, in case protons doesn't decay, almost all matter is gonna be converted into Fe-56. It sounds reasonable if you consider the damn alpha decay as the most imporant cluster decay exploiding the BE mechanism stuff. In my personal opinion no element is more stable to alpha decay than Carbon, oxygen, neon etc, which are so light... the decay wouldn't be feasible as the final product would always have less BE. That's OK. But my favourite elements... all of them seems to be bound to loss mass until reaching Fe-56, Fe-58 and Ni-62. So.. what prevents such reactions?

    I know the post was huge so I'm sorry dudes. Also, I apologize for my English level. It is not as bad as it could be considering I learned it by reading Wiki posts, but I know isn't perfect yet.

  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 20, 2015 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Hi Karakele,

    You won't get an answer to your questions in this New Members Introduction forum---as the name implies, this is just for introducing yourself and saying Hi - no questions allowed. You need to post your question in the appropriate forum.
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