Split an atom?
Name: Mark s scheiber
How do you split an atom?
One way is to strip off a bunch of its electrons with
light pulses or with charged plates...and then send
it to circulate through a curved magnetic field
(since the atom has lost some electrons, it is now
charged, and charged particles speed up when you
put them into a curved magnetic field). When you get
the atom going really really fast, change the field
and let the particle slam into a target. Sort of
like throwing an alarm clock against a wall really hard....
the atom smashes open and we see its "insides"
come screaming out (using a special detector).
This is called a "particle accelerator," by the way.
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Update: June 2012