Fission (“splitting”) occurs when the nucleus of large, unstable atoms, like uranium and plutonium, break into smaller atoms, releasing energetic radiation and neutrons. Fission powers the “atomic” bomb that destroyed Hiroshima, and all nuclear power reactors.
Fusion (“joining”) occurs when light atoms, primarily isotopes of hydrogen, fuse into larger atoms, releasing fantastic quantities of energy. Fusion powers the sun and “hydrogen” bombs, which are called “thermonuclear” for the intense heat needed to overcome electrical repulsion between positively-charged hydrogen nuclei. Fusion, however, is extremely difficult to control; although billions have been spent to tame fusion for electricity, practical reactors are decades away.
Snow Owl by MJM Photography
St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in this day of battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou o Prince of the heavenly hosts, cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who wander now throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls.
Walk into the Grace Cathedral in San Francisco from now till the end of February and you’ll find a gorgeous art installation that features 20 miles of ribbon cascading from the church’s vaulted ceiling arches. Artist Anne Patterson is behind Graced With Light, an installation consisting of nearly 1,000 satin ribbons with colors inspired by stained glass. It took the artist months to prepare, which she did in her art studio in Manhattan by constructing a 3/16-inch scale model of it with embroidery floss. Then, on site, it took Patterson and the Grace Cathedral community eight days to hand-assemble the project.