New state of water molecule discovered

Neutron scattering and computational modeling have revealed unique and unexpected behavior of water molecules under extreme confinement that is unmatched by any known gas, liquid or solid states.

Radio-burst discovery deepens astrophysics mystery

The discovery of a split-second burst of radio waves by scientists using the Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico provides important new evidence of mysterious pulses that appear to come from deep in outer space.

Scientists discover new type of magnet

A team of scientists has discovered the first robust example of a new type of magnet—one that holds promise for enhancing the performance of data storage technologies.

8th century gamma ray burst irradiated the Earth, study finds

(Phys.org)—A nearby short duration gamma-ray burst may be the cause of an intense blast of high-energy radiation that hit the Earth in the 8th century, according to new research led by astronomers Valeri Hambaryan and Ralph ...

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Neutron

The neutron is a subatomic particle with no net electric charge and a mass slightly larger than that of a proton.

Neutrons are usually found in atomic nuclei. The nuclei of most atoms consist of protons and neutrons, which are therefore collectively referred to as nucleons. The number of protons in a nucleus is the atomic number and defines the type of element the atom forms. The number of neutrons determines the isotope of an element. For example, the carbon-12 isotope has 6 protons and 6 neutrons, while the carbon-14 isotope has 6 protons and 8 neutrons.

While bound neutrons in stable nuclei are stable, free neutrons are unstable; they undergo beta decay with a lifetime of just under 15 minutes (885.7 ± 0.8 s). Free neutrons are produced in nuclear fission and fusion. Dedicated neutron sources like research reactors and spallation sources produce free neutrons for the use in irradiation and in neutron scattering experiments.

Even though it is not a chemical element, the free neutron is sometimes included in tables of nuclides. It is then considered to have an atomic number of zero and a mass number of one.

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