Why do the stars shine and how do thermonuclear weapons work?

When you look at a night sky without city lights, there is more stars than the number of sand particles on all beaches in the world .How pale they look, each of them is like the Sun in their system. The life of the creatures depends on the stars (from the non-astrological):

  • Creation of essential elements for life
  • Usable Energy
  • Increasing diversity by mutating genetic material

Our bodies are made of remnants of stars and massive explosions in the galaxies

The nearest star, the Sun, is medium-sized 4.6 billion years old and converts about 4,000,000,000 kg of mass into energy (ΔE = Δm c2) every second.The mass that turns into energy is usually broadcast in photon format. The photon formed in the nucleus was born in a very dense plasma and interacts with continuously charged particles, leaving the surface after colliding about 1 million years and reaching the world in 8 minutes. Our energy is ready to be used.How it works?

Basically, a fusion reaction takes place inside the stars. Approximately 73% of the Sun’s mass is hydrogen.
It is obtained by converting 4 hydrogen nuclei (protons) into helium nuclei.In this process, we can understand why energy is released by Bonding Energy.
If you go from left to right on the chart, the stars will shine (fusion) and if you go from right to left, atomic bombs (fission) will explode.

Nuclear binding energy: the energy required to separate the nucleus of the atom into its components. Strong nuclear force is very short-range but very powerful, it helps to hold nucleons together.When we examine the binding energies per nucleon graph, the binding energy per nucleon increases until Iron-56 and then decreases. If you want to find the mass of an atom, you subtract the binding energy from the energy of its nucleons.Energy and mass are two sides of the coin.

  • Stagnant energy of an atom = Energy of the nucleons it contains-Binding energy
  • A Helium atom contains 2 protons, 2 neutrons, if we compare a weighing scale with 2 protons, 2 neutrons and Helium atoms, we would see that the Helium atom is lighter because some of the energy is used to keep the nucleons contained in it strong nuclear force.
  • A reaction in the sun is deuterium + tritium = helium + neutron + 17.6 Mev energy is given out,If you operate with neutron proton and bonding energies, you can find energy around 17.6 Mev.
  • According to classical mechanics, the sun should not be burned, the core temperature is 15.000.000 degrees on average and it is insufficient to continue the fusion. Thanks to quantum tunneling, energy barriers can be overcome.
  • As a result of this process, stars form heavier elements with nucleosynthesis, this process runs up to the iron element because the binding energy starts to decrease after iron, the energy of the element to be created is higher than the inputs.
    The stars that begin to form iron in their nucleus begin to die, and if they are not very large, they eventually pass the super nova and scatter the essential elements of life in the universe.If elements are produced up to iron, it may be asked where gold or heavier elements come from, they are formed by star collisions or high energy at the moment of supernova.

From creating to destroying

Thermonuclear weapons is an attempt to bring the sun to the earth.When you start compressing a gas, it gradually starts to increase in temperature, first it loses its electrons, ionizes and turns into plasma, then it loses its atomic structure and divides into proarks and neutrons, and then becomes nucleons.
Before a star is born, it is in the form of a cloud of dust and gas. The gravitational sphere begins to compress the particles to take the form of a sphere. Protons are positively charged. When they approach each other, they apply electrostatic force (increasing)and deviate from their path before they reach the distance at which nuclear force can interact.This is called the Coulomb barrier.

Atoms or nucleons with enough kinetic energy enter the range of strong nuclear force and nuclear reactions may occur when they approach each other by 1 Fentometer (10 ^ -15 meters).The stars can do this heating process thanks to their huge mass, so how can we carry out this heating process in the world: Do not try it at home!

The main parts of Thermonuclear Weapons:

  • Chemical explosive
  • Atomic bomb (Fission)
  • Hydrogen bomb (Fusion)

Basic operation The chemical explosive transports the fission bomb to the critical mass and starts a nuclear reaction to the chain. Atom bomb is used to match the hydrogen bomb.

Understanding the critical mass is important for controlling weapons, we can ask the question how a chemical reaction starts a nuclear reaction.

Over 90% enriched uranium-235 or plutonium-239 does not initiate a self-chain reaction because there is too much gap between atoms and neutrons leak out.

There are 3 steps you can take to reach the critical mass:

1-Adding more items

2-Reducing the surface area that neutrons can escape

3-Increasing the density

The chemical explosive compresses the fissile material, increasing its density, making it explosive spherical, so it has less surface area and Beryllium reflectors are placed around the sphere, a fast neutron trying to escape, hitting the beryllium reflector, slowing the sugar and continuing the fission with an increased number.The atomic bomb is now activated, the mass transforms into energy and radiates to blindly illuminate even the darkest night.

Before the shock wave disrupts the integrity of the weapon, the high-energy Gamma and X-rays (speed of light) start heating the hydrogen bomb to millions of degrees, which takes place at 550 billionth of a second.
The fuel of the hydrogen bomb is Lithium deuterite, it reacts with neutron and forms Helium + Tritium, then Helium + Tritium reacts and energy is released, this process takes place in 50 billionth of a second.The energy released in fusion is much more than fission.

The energy of 10,000,000,000 kg of TNT is in a very hot plasma, the plasma expands and begins to cool by forming a vortex.
It causes sudden changes in the pressure of the air around the shock wave, lowers the ambient temperature, as a result, moisture in the air condenses and briefly creates Wilson clouds. It can also be observed in jet aircraft that perform suddenly maneuver.

If there was no gravity, the cloud would have been dispersed in a similar way to the sphere. The famous mushroom cloud formed by these explosions can be seen even from 965 km away and can reach as high as 30 km.

A person looking from Istanbul can easily see the mushroom cloud in Mersin unless there is a big obstacle.Objects in the regions near the center of the explosion evaporate and mix into the cloud due to the plasma, which is even warmer than the sun.Then they fall on the earth with radioactive particles depending on the direction of the wind.







Ömer Özgür

Ömer Özgür


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