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Atomic Binding Energy

In an atom, the atomic nucleus is a very suitable structure. Therefore, nucleons in every nucleus are bound together with short range interacting forces called nuclear forces. A definite amount of work has to be done to separate the nucleons from the nucleus to such a distance that there is no interaction between them. This work done is a measure of binding energy of the nucleus. Let us discuss some more about the atomic binding energy.

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Nuclear Binding Energy

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The binding energy of a nucleus is the energy with which nucleons are bound in the nucleus. It is measured by the work required to be done to separate the nucleons an infinite distance apart from the nucleus, so that they may not interact with each other. The origin of nuclear binding energy has been explained on the basis of Einstein’s theory of mass energy equivalence. It is found that the rest mass of a nucleus is always slightly less than the sum of the rest masses of free neutrons and protons composing the nucleus. This is as if certain mass disappears in the formation of the nucleus. This difference between the sum of the masses of neutrons and protons forming a nucleus and mass of the nucleus is called mass defect which appears in the form of binding energy. The binding energy is responsible for bind the nucleons together in the nucleus.

Binding Energy
The formula to calculate the binding energy

E = mc2

Where m is the mass defect in kg and
           c be the velocity of light in vacuum.
Here we get the energy in Joule.

   E = m × 931.5 MeV, where m is the mass defect in amu and we get the energy in MeV.


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