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Question 1: Why does the alpha particle not make physical contact with the nucleus when an alpha particle is headed directly towards the nucleus of an atom?

ANSWER

Two protons and two neutrons constitute the alpha particle. When an alpha particle is headed directly towards the nucleus of an atom, it does not make a physical contact with the nucleus of the atom. As it approaches the nucleus, the Coulomb’s repulsive force between the positive charge of alpha particle and that of the protons in the nucleus of the atom comes to play. This repulsive force pushes the alpha particle away from the nucleus and it does not make a physical contact with the nucleus.

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