Physics Tutorial 20.4 - Nuclear Reactions

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There are 11 lessons in this physics tutorial covering Nuclear Reactions. The tutorial starts with an introduction to Nuclear Reactions and is then followed with a list of the separate lessons, the tutorial is designed to be read in order but you can skip to a specific lesson or return to recover a specific physics lesson as required to build your physics knowledge of Nuclear Reactions. you can access all the lessons from this tutorial below.

In this Physics tutorial, you will learn:

  • What are nuclear reactions? How do they occur?
  • What is energy of reaction?
  • What does the total mass of system before and after nuclear reaction indicate regarding the energy produced during the process?
  • What is the difference between nuclear reactions and radioactive decay processes?
  • What is nuclear fission? In which conditions does it occur?
  • How nuclear fission was discovered?
  • What is nuclear fusion? How it is different from nuclear fission?
  • What is the main example of nuclear fusion occurring naturally? What are the stages of this process?
  • What is neutron capture? Where does it differ from nuclear fusion?
  • What are radioactive families?
  • How can nuclear reactions occur spontaneously?
  • What are nuclear power plants? How do they work?
  • What is nuclear bomb? What is its principle of operation?
  • What are some practical applications of nuclear fusion reactions?
  • What does the penetration of nuclear radiation in matter causes in living and non-living things?
  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of nuclear energy use?


Have you ever heard about nuclear reactors? How do they work?

Do you think it is possible to merge two atomic nuclei at home conditions? What about to split an atomic nucleus in two smaller nuclei? Why?

What is nuclear energy used for? Give some examples.

In this article, we will discuss about nuclear reactions - a prerequisite to produce nuclear energy. We will explain various types of nuclear reactions as well as how nuclear energy (which is produced in abundance during nuclear reactions) is used in industry.

In addition - among many other things - we will explain the thermonuclear reactions, as a special category of nuclear reactions, as they have a wide range of use in daily life.

Please select a specific "Nuclear Reactions" lesson from the table below, review the video tutorial, print the revision notes or use the practice question to improve your knowledge of this physics topic.

Nuclear Physics Learning Material
Tutorial IDPhysics Tutorial TitleTutorialVideo
20.4Nuclear Reactions
Lesson IDPhysics Lesson TitleLessonVideo
20.4.1What are Nuclear Reactions?
20.4.2Nuclear Fission
20.4.3Nuclear Fusion
20.4.4Neutron Capture
20.4.5Nuclear Reaction Occurring Spontaneously. Radioactive Families
20.4.6More on Nuclear Fission. Nuclear Energy and Its Use
20.4.7Nuclear Power Plants and Energy Production
20.4.8Nuclear Bombs
20.4.9Thermonuclear Reactions and their Use in Technology
20.4.10Application in Practice of Nuclear Fusion Reactions
20.4.11Penetration of Nuclear Radiation in Matter and the Harm Caused by Radiation

Whats next?

Enjoy the "Nuclear Reactions" physics tutorial? People who liked the "Nuclear Reactions" tutorial found the following resources useful:

  1. Physics tutorial Feedback. Helps other - Leave a rating for this tutorial (see below)
  2. Nuclear Physics Revision Notes: Nuclear Reactions. Print the notes so you can revise the key points covered in the physics tutorial for Nuclear Reactions
  3. Nuclear Physics Practice Questions: Nuclear Reactions. Test and improve your knowledge of Nuclear Reactions with example questins and answers
  4. Check your calculations for Nuclear Physics questions with our excellent Nuclear Physics calculators which contain full equations and calculations clearly displayed line by line. See the Nuclear Physics Calculators by iCalculator™ below.
  5. Continuing learning nuclear physics - read our next physics tutorial: Atomic Nucleus and Its Structural Properties

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