The Atomic Bomb
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|The Atomic Bomb
The atomic bomb is a powerful, explosive nuclear weapon. It is fueled by the fission of the nuclei of specific amounts of plutonium or uranium, in a chain reaction. The strength of the explosion created by one of these bombs is equal to the strength of an explosion created by thousands of tons of TNT. To detonate one of these bombs, enough mass of plutonium or uranium must be provided to reach what is known as "critical mass." Critical mass is the mass at which the nuclear reactions going on inside the material can make up for the neutrons that are leaving the material through its outside surface. These materials are usually separated within the bomb so that critical mass cannot be reached until the bomb is ready to explode. Once the chemical reactions within the bomb begin, the neutrons released by each reaction hit other atoms and create more fission reactions until all the material is scattered, or completely exhausted. This process releases enormous am...
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