Isotopes and radiation

  • Isotopes are different forms of the same element 
  • atomic number =number protons 
  • mass number = number of protons + number of neutrons 
  • isotopes have the same number of protons but with different number of neutrons 
  • unstbale isotopes will decay
  • decay is releasing radiation to rebalence numbers of protons and neutrons 
  • ionising power is how easily rhe radiation knocks electrons off atoms (this is bad if the atom is a living thing)
  • Alpha particle- 2 protons, 2 neutrons (helium nucleus)
  • don't penetrate. Few cm in air, stopped by paper
  • strongly ionising 
  • Beta Particle- fast moving, high energy electron (no mass, charge -1)
  • penetrate moderatly. Few m in air, stopped by aliminium
  • moderatley ionsing
  • a neutron is turned into a proton 
  • Gamma rays-


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