Physics Essay Example
Type of paper: Essay
Topic: Atomic Bomb, Disaster, Nuclear Weapon, Sleep, Radiation, Energy, Reaction, Skin
Chain reactions are represented in various forms even in humans’ everyday life. Considering your private life, the rumors spread are often called the chain reaction as well since the information begins to tittle-tattle until everybody gets acknowledged about N’s new boyfriend. You can experience it when building nice super long chains of dominos and push one of the element and they start falling pushing the nearby bones. This is the simplest example of chain reaction – an action which cannot be returned backwards and frequently having a great residue and impact. Take, for instance, billiards. The initial balls arrangement often solves all the game, so it can be stated that this is the chain reaction as well – the white ball hits the balls arranged in a triangle and they stir to new positions on the table. These simple kinematic examples make you understand the very idea of chain reaction, but indeed in physics and chemistry they look very, very much complicated.
The processes of nuclear disintegration nowadays are widely used in nuclear power energy production, helping maintaining lots of heavy power-consuming industries. But the nuclear plants have these reactions strictly controlled to keep safe, efficient and reduce damage. Scientists often use “bombing” while producing energy on nuclear plants. This chain reaction runs when the atom electrons bomb the atom core until it explodes, the electrons fly apart fired by the energy of the previous explosion and bomb other atoms. Thus, the huge amount of energy is revealed, then accumulated and transformed to electric energy. Transformations of substances are accompanied by the release of free energy only if the substance has a reserve of energy. Uranium and Plutonium are the main fuels having such amount of energy.
However, everything is not as good as it looks like, since the processes on nuclear power plants sometimes go out of control causing huge disasters. The territories of the former plants become abundant for hundreds of years because of the release of radiation killing all the living creatures or effecting their health, growth and development.
Nuclear weapons industry, on the contrary, does not tend to control the reaction in order to inflict the maximum damage of the enemy at the same time inhaling the minimum expenditures and sources. The nuclear bomb usually consists of a warhead, control and delivery systems. When bomb detonating the explosion entails huge number of factors including blast wave, luminous radiation, penetrating radiation, radioactive contamination, and electromagnetic pulse. In this case the chain reaction becomes devilish feature in arms of terrorists.
Radiation is a stream of gamma rays and neutrons emitted from the environment of a nuclear explosion in a few seconds. Penetrating humans and animals it causes a radiation sickness of varying severity. It operates within 15-25 seconds from the moment of explosion. High energy gamma rays and neutrons are able to penetrate deep into the body tissue and to ionize them. Ionizing radiation affects primarily hematopoietic organs: bone marrow, lymph gland, spleen, which leads to a drastic reduction in the number of leukocytes, and ultimately to reduce the body's resistance to infection. Reducing the number of red blood cells causes tissue anoxia impairs blood clotting, which leads to multiple hemorrhages in the skin and mucous membranes. Damaging effect of ionizing radiation depends on the absorbed dose, as well as the period of accumulation in the human organism. Thus, people distinguish acute and chronic exposure. Short-term exposure is acute and chronic exposure lasts for decades.
Rem, the roentgen equivalent in man, measures the radiation dose in the human body. 25 rem will have no manifested symptoms while 50 rem cause the temporary reduction in the number of lymphocytes (Forshier, 2009). Nausea, vomiting, drowsiness whole body, a significant reduction in the number of lymphocytes are experienced when getting 100 on the rem scale. 150 of rem entail the death probability of 5% and 50% of injured experience the condition similar to a hangover from alcohol. Reducing the number of white blood cells for a long time is the result of getting over 200 rem. 50% of people die within 30 days after receiving 350 rem and only 20% survive within 14 days after 600 rem. These risk measures were estimated from direct observations while we can only guess what happens receiving 1000-1500 rem. Scientists state that 300-500 rem are causing infertility for a whole lifetime, hair loss and skin redness.
Forshier, Steve. Essentials of Radiation Biology and Protection. 2nd ed. Clifton Park, NY: Delmar, 2009. Print.