To maintain a sustained controlled nuclear reaction, for every 2 or 3 neutrons released, only one must be allowed to strike another uranium nucleus. If this ratio is less than one then the reaction will die out; if it is greater than one it will grow uncontrolled (an atomic explosion). A neutron absorbing element must be present to control the amount of free neutrons in the reaction space. Most reactors are controlled by means of control rods that are made of a strongly neutron-absorbent material such as boron or cadmium. It is called moderator.