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The Atomic Nucleus

Searching for the ultimate building blocks of the physical world has always been a central theme in the history of scientific research. Many acclaimed ancient philosophers from very different cultures have pondered the consequences of subdividing regular, tangible objects into their smaller and smaller, invisible constituents. Many of them believed that eventually there would exist a final, inseparable fundamental entity of matter, as emphasized by the use of the ancient Greek word, atomos (atom), which means "not divisible." Were these atoms really the long sought-after, indivisible, structureless building blocks of the physical world?

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