Difference between nuclear fission and nuclear fusion

Asked by  | 19th Mar, 2008, 04:49: PM

Expert Answer:

Nuclear fission is the process used in the production of nuclear power. Fission involves splitting the nucleus of a heavy atom, such as uranium. This yields two or more lighter nuclei and a large amount of energy.

Fusion, on the other hand, is the combination of two hydrogen nuclei into one helium nucleus, under conditions of extreme heat and pressure. Fusion is the process by which energy is created in the sun.

While the hydrogen bomb relies on fusion, fusion has not yet been used in the production of nuclear power. The latter fact is primarily because it is extremely expensive to create the conditions necessary to begin a fusion reaction. A process called "cold fusion," which does not require heat, is currently in the experimental stages.


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Answered by  | 20th Apr, 2008, 12:57: PM

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