PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Nuclear fusion to make gold (1 of 6 images). Comp- uter simulation of the collision of lanthanum (larger sphere) & copper nuclei to make gold. Each nucleus type has a specific number of positively- charged particles (protons). Gold has 79 protons, lanthanum 57 & copper 29. The nuclei are moving towards each other at a third of the speed of light to overcome the repulsive forces between each one's protons. Researchers at the Large Heavy Ion Accelerator (GANIL) in Caen, France, are trying to get the nuclei close enough for them to take part in a nuclear fusion reaction which forms gold. A130/020 to A130/024).
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