Conceptual Physics (12th Edition)

Published by Addison-Wesley
ISBN 10: 0321909100
ISBN 13: 978-0-32190-910-7

Chapter 34 - Think and Discuss: 73


Yes, fissioning any element would release energy. No, fusing any element would require energy input; it would never release energy.

Work Step by Step

Hypothetically, if the mass per nucleon kept rising with atomic number, all fission reactions would yield nuclei with lower atomic number and less mass per nu­cleon, releasing energy. On the other hand, all fusion reactions (which increase the atomic number) would result in a nu­cleus with more mass per nucleon. The process would require energy input.
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