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Spontaneous Fission

In 1993 Otto Hahn and Strassman bombarded uranium-235 (U235) with slow neutrons. They observed that the nucleus of uranium splits into at least nucleus of smaller mass, such as barium and krypton. Along with these lighter elements some neutrons are also ejected and energy is released. 


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The products formed during the fission reaction are called fission products.The process of fission is represented as follows:92U235+0N1 --> 92U236 --> 56Ba141+36Kr92+30n1+energyspontaneous fissionDefinition of nuclear fission:The nuclear fission is defined as the process of splitting a heavy nucleus into two nuclei of smaller mass.It may be noted that the fission products may not always be barium and krypton. 


Release of Energy during the Fission Nuclear ReactionIf we find the product of the masses of the end products in any fission reaction, then this total mass is found to be slightly less than the mass of uranium and neutron, that is the mass of the product is nearly reduced by 0.1% of the original mass. The energy that is lost is called as nuclear energy.The large quantity of energy released in fission mainly appears in the form of kinetic energy of the fission fragments and neutrons. 


Spontaneous FissionThe form of the characteristics of radioactive decay of very heavy isotopes is called as the spontaneous fission. The nucleus which are having a mass of 100 atomic mass and greater than possible to have spontaneous fission. The elements that are placed near the ruthenium possibly show spontaneous fission. The high atomic number actinide elements like lawrencium, mendelevium, and Tran’s actinides element like rutherfordium are most susceptible to have spontaneous fission. 


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spontaneous decayThe spontaneous decay does occur for uranium and thorium, but the majority of the break downs are not seen, hence it is neglected except for the exact considerations of the branching ratio when the samples containing these elements are on experiment.