Sir Mark Oliphant A Bright Sparcs Exhibition

Atomic Reactions

When a fast stream of positive ions, from a particle accelerator, hits Lithium atoms, their nuceli break up into Tritium (Hydrogen with two neutrons), Deuterium (Hydrogen with one neutron) and Hydrogen atoms.

Positive ions hitting Lithium atom

When Tritium nuclei react, a great deal of energy and radioactivity is produced. This is not as 'clean' as a Hydrogen reaction, but it is easier to get going.

Tritium nuclei reaction

Published by the
Australian Science Archives Project on ASAPWeb, 26 June 1996
Comments or corrections to: Bright Sparcs (
Prepared by: Denise Sutherland
Updated by: Elissa Tenkate
Date modified: 19 February 1998

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