Can a new Hydrogen atom be created in the universe?

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Can a new Hydrogen atom be created in the universe?

Postby manch » Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:14 pm

Is the amount of hydrogen atoms in the universe decreasing.Aren't there any newly created or formed hydrogen atoms in the universe?
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Re: Can a new Hydrogen atom be created in the universe?

Postby Craig_Bridge » Wed Dec 05, 2012 4:42 pm

Try looking up fission reactions and alpha particles (protons). A Hydrogen atom is essentially a proton that finds a free electron.
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Re: Can a new Hydrogen atom be created in the universe?

Postby manch » Wed Dec 05, 2012 9:36 pm

can you be clear dear sir.....I am not a science student....so does this mean a hydrogen molecule can be created in outer space....and thus hydrogen molecules are not decreasing by time because there are new ones created.....
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Re: Can a new Hydrogen atom be created in the universe?

Postby Craig_Bridge » Thu Dec 06, 2012 5:11 pm

The primary reason Science Buddies experts volunteer their time is help students with Science Fair Projects as a way to promote learning about Science.

Your question "Can a new Hydrogen atom be created in the universe?" requires more than a little understanding of nuclear physics to understand how it is possible. I provided you with some words that you could use in a search engine to read up on the nuclear physics processes involved. If I used words that you didn't understand, there are online searches that you can use to learn the meanings of those words.

CHEMICAL CONSERVATION OF ATOMS:
In chemistry, atoms are conserved, meaning you can't create or destroy them using chemical, mechanical, or electrical means. An atom has a neucleus made up of protons and neutrons which determines what type of atom it is. Chemical, mechanical, and electrical means will NOT change the neucleus, so the atom will remain the same chemical element.

It is only with nuclear physics processes like fision (splitting atoms) and fusion (combining nucleus of two atoms to form a different atom) that the atomic structure and hence chemical atomic properties of something changes.

manch wrote:so does this mean a hydrogen molecule can be created in outer space

You don't have to go to outer space. High energy physics laboratories are slaming particles together that are breaking apart neucleus and generating "alpha" particles which usually eventually end up becoming a hydrogen atom.

The other aspect
manch wrote:hydrogen molecules are not decreasing
hides the question, how can a hydrogen atom be destroyed?
Stars are combining Hydrogen atoms using fusion to produce Helium but stars are also emitting alpha particle radiation. I personally don't think we have enough knowledge the behavior of everything in the universe to have any clue on whether the total amount of hydrogen is increasing or decreasing.

These are very interesting Science questions, hopefully you will be interested enough to study science and become a scientist and be able to extend our knowledge in these areas. Doing a science fair project and learning how to use the scientific method is a good start on this path; however, working in this area of science takes a lot more understanding of simpler things as a basis.
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