Ionisation

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EM radiation that has high-energy photons is more harmful than radiation with low-energy photons

Some EM radiation causes Ionisation

  • Everything is made of atoms and molecules
  • When a photon hits an atom or molecule, it sometimes has enough energy to remove an electron and change the atom or molecule
  • This process is called ionisation
  • It takes a lot of energy to remove an electron
  • Only EM radiation with high enough photon energy can cause ionisation
  • Ultraviolet, X-rays and gamma rays cause ionisation
  • Some substances (radioactive materials) emit ionising gamma radiation 

Ionisation is dangerous if it happens in your cells

  • Your cells can be damaged by ionising radiation

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