**Inquiry question: How can the energy of the atomic nucleus be harnessed?**

**Students:**

● analyse the spontaneous decay of unstable nuclei, and the properties of the alpha, beta and gamma radiation emitted (ACSPH028, ACSPH030)

● examine the model of half-life in radioactive decay and make quantitative predictions about the activity or amount of a radioactive sample using the following relationships:

where ?_{t} = number of particles at time ?, ?_{0} = number of particles present at ? = 0, ? = decay constant, ?_{1/2} = time for half the radioactive amount to decay (ACSPH029)

● model and explain the process of nuclear fission, including the concepts of controlled and uncontrolled chain reactions, and account for the release of energy in the process (ACSPH033, ACSPH034)

● analyse relationships that represent conservation of mass-energy in spontaneous and artificial nuclear transmutations, including alpha decay, beta decay, nuclear fission and nuclear fusion (ACSPH032)

● account for the release of energy in the process of nuclear fusion (ACSPH035, ACSPH036)

● predict quantitatively the energy released in nuclear decays or transmutations, including nuclear fission and nuclear fusion, by applying: (ACSPH031, ACSPH035, ACSPH036)

– the law of conservation of energy

– mass defect

– binding energy

– Einstein’s mass–energy equivalence relationship ? = ??^{2}

Extract from *Physics Stage 6 Syllabus © 2017 *NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA)