deuterium do͞otēr´ēəm [key], isotope of hydrogen with mass no. 2. The deuterium nucleus, called a deuteron, contains one proton and one neutron. Deuterium is also called heavy hydrogen, and water in which the hydrogen atoms are deuterium is called heavy water (deuterium oxide, D 2O). Deuterons are sometimes used in particle accelerators, and heavy water is used in
swimming poolnuclear reactors as a moderator.
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