Dictionary.com

nucleosynthesis

[ noo-klee-oh-sin-thuh-sis, nyoo- ]
/ ˌnu kli oʊˈsɪn θə sɪs, ˌnyu- /
Save This Word!

noun Physics, Astronomy.
the formation of new atomic nuclei by nuclear reactions, thought to occur in the interiors of stars and in the early stages of development of the universe.
QUIZ
ARE YOU A TRUE BLUE CHAMPION OF THESE "BLUE" SYNONYMS?
We could talk until we're blue in the face about this quiz on words for the color "blue," but we think you should take the quiz and find out if you're a whiz at these colorful terms.
Question 1 of 8
Which of the following words describes “sky blue”?
Meet Grammar CoachWrite or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing
Meet Grammar CoachImprove Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help

Origin of nucleosynthesis

First recorded in 1955–60; nucleo- + synthesis

OTHER WORDS FROM nucleosynthesis

nu·cle·o·syn·thet·ic [noo-klee-oh-sin-thet-ik, nyoo-], /ˌnu kli oʊ sɪnˈθɛt ɪk, ˌnyu-/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use nucleosynthesis in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for nucleosynthesis

nucleosynthesis
/ (ˌnjuːklɪəʊˈsɪnθɪsɪs) /

noun
astronomy the formation of heavier elements from lighter elements by nuclear fusion in stars
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for nucleosynthesis

nucleosynthesis
[ nōō′klē-ō-sĭnthĭ-sĭs ]

The process by which heavier chemical elements are synthesized in the interiors of stars from hydrogen nuclei and other previously synthesized elements. Precisely which elements are involved in nucleosynthesis depends on the age and mass of the star. The most prevalent reaction in smaller stars like our Sun is the fusion of hydrogen into helium by the proton-proton chain; in more massive stars this fusion occurs via the carbon cycle. When a star is burning hydrogen in its core, it is a main-sequence star. In older stars such as the red giants, nucleosynthesis involves the burning of heavier elements created by earlier fusion; for example, helium may burn via the triple alpha process. More massive stars-over eight solar masses-also fuse carbon into neon and magnesium, oxygen into silicon and sulfur, and silicon into iron. The nucleosynthesis of iron is the precursor to the transition into the supernova phase.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
FEEDBACK