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Spontaneous fission rate to half-life equivalence

  1. Apr 26, 2011 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    The spontaneous fission rate for U-238 is roughly 1 fission per gram per 100 seconds. Show that this rate is the equivalent to a half-life for spontaneous fission of ~5.5x1015 years

    2. Relevant equations
    none that I can find in my book

    3. The attempt at a solution
    I'm thinking this is just basically a conversion of units problem, but want to check that with someone else. Not entirely sure where I would start so any help would be appreciated.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 26, 2011 #2


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    1. How many U-238 atoms are there in 1 gram?
    2. If one of them decays every 100 seconds, how long will you have to wait until half of them have decayed?
  4. Apr 30, 2011 #3
    thank you- knew it had to be fairly simple- just overthinking it!
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