Neutron interactions with matter
Keywords:neutron interactions, nucleus, scattering, absorption, fisija, spalacija
Neutrons are uncharged particles and therefore do not interacting with atomic electrons of material, only interacting with the nuclei of these atoms. The nuclear force, leading to these interactions, is very short ranged and therefore neutrons have to pass close to a nucleus to be able to interact (≈ 10-15 m). Because of small size of the nucleus in relation to the atom, neutrons have low probability of interaction meaning they have long travelling distances in matter. Free neutrons interact with the nuclei of other materials in various ways, the most common being absorption and scattering. Scattering results in the transfer of some energy and the neutron continues to move through the medium but at a lower energy and hence lower velocity.