Nuclear bombing of
Hiroshima, 6th August 1945

7. The nuclear bomb

Neutrons are very penetrating because they are uncharged. This makes them very useful to nuclear physicists, as they can be fired into the nucleus without being repelled like the proton. A neutron can even be made to stop inside a nucleus, transforming elements into more massive types.

This understanding of the neutron allowed scientists to develop nuclear power, and nuclear weapons during the Second World War. Chadwick helped in the theory behind the first nuclear bombs, and used a particle accelerator in Liverpool to show that it is possible to construct them with only a few kilograms of uranium.

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