Lesson Plan: Nuclear Fusion Physics • 9th Grade

This lesson plan includes the objectives, prerequisites, and exclusions of the lesson teaching students how to describe the process of nuclear fusion and the advantages and disadvantages of nuclear fusion reactors.


Students will be able to

  • recall that fusion is the process of atomic nuclei combining to form a single nucleus,
  • recall which elements will release energy through fusion,
  • recall that deuterium and tritium are isotopes of hydrogen,
  • recall the element symbols for deuterium and tritium,
  • identify fusion processes from nuclear ball diagrams,
  • identify reactants and products from nuclear ball diagrams,
  • complete and write nuclear equations for basic fusion processes,
  • relate nuclear equations to nuclear ball diagrams for fusion processes.


Students should already be familiar with

  • the composition of atoms.


Students will not cover

  • calculations of binding energy and mass deficit,
  • the half-life,
  • nuclear reaction cross sections,
  • the design of nuclear fusion reactors,
  • the advantages and disadvantages of nuclear fusion as a power source,
  • the dangers of radiation,
  • the different types of fusion processes that happen in different stars,
  • fusion in the early universe.

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