   Chapter 15, Problem 5P

Chapter
Section
Textbook Problem

The nucleus of 8Be, which consists of 4 protons and 4 neutrons, is very unstable and spontaneously breaks into two alpha particles (helium nuclei, each consisting of 2 protons and 2 neutrons). (a) What is the force between the two alpha particles when they are 5.00 × 10−15 m apart, and (b) what is the initial magnitude of the acceleration of the alpha particles due to this force? Note that the mass of an alpha particle is 4.002 6 u.

(a)

To determine
The force between the two alpha particles.

Explanation

Given info: The two alpha particles with charges q1=2e and q2=2e are separated by a distance (r) of 5.00×1015m .

Formula to calculate the force is,

F=ke|q1||q2|d2

• ke is the Coulomb constant.
• q1 and q2 are the charges.
• r is the distance of separation.

Substitute 8.99×109N.m2/C2 for ke , 3.2×1019C for q1 , 3

(b)

To determine
The acceleration of the alpha particles.

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