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Radioactive Decay, Nuclear Reactions
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Slide 1

Nuclear Reactions

Nuclear Reactions

Alpha, Beta, and Gamma Decay

Slide 2

CS 4.2

CS 4.2

CS 4.3

State what is meant by alpha, beta and gamma decay of radionuclides.

Identify the processes occurring in nuclear reactions written in symbolic form.

Slide 3

The Atom

The Atom

The atom consists of two parts:

1. The nucleus which contains:

2. Orbiting electrons.

protons

neutrons

Slide 4

All matter is made up of elements (e.g. carbon, hydrogen, etc.).

All matter is made up of elements (e.g. carbon, hydrogen, etc.).

The smallest part of an element is called an atom.

Atom of different elements contain different numbers of protons.

The mass of an atom is almost entirely due to the number of protons and neutrons.

The Atom

Slide 5

X

X

A

Z

Mass number

Atomic number

Element symbol

= number of protons + number of neutrons

= number of protons

Slide 6

A = number of protons + number of neutrons

A = number of protons + number of neutrons

Z = number of protons

A Z = number of neutrons

Number of neutrons = Mass Number Atomic Number

Slide 7

There are many types of uranium:

There are many types of uranium:

Slide 8

There are many types of uranium:

There are many types of uranium:

Isotopes of any particular element contain the same number of protons, but different numbers of neutrons.

Slide 9

Most of the isotopes which occur naturally are stable.

Most of the isotopes which occur naturally are stable.

A few naturally occurring isotopes and all of the man-made isotopes are unstable.

Unstable isotopes can become stable by releasing different types of particles.

This process is called radioactive decay and the elements which undergo this process are called radioisotopes/radionuclides.

Slide 10

Radioactive Decay

Radioactive Decay

Radioactive decay results in the emission of either:

an alpha particle (a),

a beta particle (b),

or a gamma ray(g).

Slide 11

Alpha Decay

Alpha Decay

An alpha particle is identical to that of a helium nucleus.

It contains two protons and two neutrons.

Slide 12

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