The fission reaction
A slow neutron is fired at a uranium nucleus.
n + U -------> U
The new nucleus formed is unstable. Fission occurs. The nucleus breaks into 2 smaller nuclei, called daughter nuclei, gamma radiation and 3 neutrons.
U -----------> Ba + Kr + 3 x n + gamma
Barium and Krypton
Each neutron will then carry on to cause the fission of 3 more uranium nuclei nad each of these products more neutrons and the number of fission reactions increases very rapidly.
- Fuel rods - enriched uranium, where the fission reaction takes place.
- Moderator - graphite, to absorb some of the kinetic energy of the neutrons to slow them down. need to cause fission.
- Control rods - cadium or boron, to stop neutrons completely. can be lowered or raised to control the amount of fission.
- shield or chamber - concrete, to absobrb…