The Sun and the Hydrogen Bomb

Where is the energy?

As you would expect, both the sun and the bomb use energy. You feel the temprature getting hotter and hotter throughout a sunny day. The bomb produces shockwaves, that desturb the particles around it, to move in a great speed. Hence, energy is involved. You feel the sun’s heat energy throughout the day, the particles are energised by the internal reactions in the bomb(we will talk about these later).

Nuclear Fission and Fusion

Generally speaking, fusion means combining two or more things. (Fans of the hit show Dragon Ball Z know this better than anyone.) Fission is separating two or more things which are joined. So it is clear, that like action and reaction forces, Fusion and Fission are contradicting to each other.

A visual representation of a fission in a reactor
A visual representation of nuclear fusion.

Mechanism of the Sun and the Bomb

The sun acts produces energy through nuclear fusion. As you might know, the universe, minutes after the big bang was filled with roughly 75% hydrogen, 23% helium and small amounts of Litium and Deuterium (simply because they are easiest to make due their low requirements of electrons, neutrons and protons). This hydrogen came together about 100 million years after the big bang, to form the first stars. So it should be no surprise that every star is made up of hydrogen and helium. In fact every element other than these 3( deuterium is an isotope of hydrogen) is believed to be made from fusion of the elements that preceed them. The sun similarly, fuses atoms of different species, if you will, to do two things, 1) To counter the gravitational forces and avoid collapsing on itself and 2) Maintain it’s energy output. The similar principle works with the hydrogen bomb, but it uses hydrogen extensively( hence the name hydrogen bomb.) Once all of the sun’s atoms reach iron, they will start fission, causing it to give into the gravitational pull and collapse on itself, perhaps becoming a white dwarf. This is expected to happen in about 5 billion years.

The lifespan of the Sun
The inside of an hydrogen bomb

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