Neutron, slow down!!!

Classical Mechanics Level 5

A neutron beam with an energy per neutron of \(E_i=1~MeV\) is passing through a region with slow moving iron atoms. Each iron atom is \(k=56\) times heavier than each neutron. Estimate the number of collisions with iron atoms each neutron needs to reduce its energy to \(E_f=0.05~eV\).

And remember, the collisions are not restricted to be one dimensional.

Details and assumptions

  • Assume that there's no preference in the scattering angle between a neutron and iron atom in their center of mass frame.

  • All collisions are perfectly elastic.


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