Radioactive radiation is created when unstable atomic nuclei (radionuclides) are transformed. The following can be released:
- Alpha radiation (double positively charged helium nuclei),
- Beta radiation (electrons or positrons),
- Gamma radiation (high-energy electromagnetic waves of small wavelength)
Radioactive radiation has many properties that are important for its effects, detection, and applications. This includes, in particular, radioactive radiation.
- Possesses energy and ionization capacity,
- is partially deflected in electric and magnetic fields,
- Substances, e.g., T. can penetrate and z. T. is absorbed by them.
Radioactive radiation is classified as alpha radiation, beta radiation, and gamma radiation. Radiation shielding can be done appropriately if one can identify which types of radiation occur.
Alpha radiation is particle radiation. It acts with alpha particles to double positively charged helium nuclei. When alpha radiation is emitted, the mass number is reduced by 4 and the atomic number (atomic number) by 2.
Beta radiation is also particle radiation. These are electrons or positrons.
When one electron is released, the mass number remains the same. The atomic number (atomic number) increases by 1.
With such nuclear transformations, it should be noted that this released electron does not come from the atomic shell. Instead, it arises from the fact that a neutron is converted into a proton and an electron in the atomic nucleus.
Beta radiation, in which electrons are given off, is also known as electron radiation or asβ–radiation.
Positrons can also be emitted during nuclear transformations. These are also particles that, unlike electrons, do not have a negative charge but an equally significant positive charge.
When a positron is emitted, the mass number remains the same. The atomic number (atomic number) is reduced by 1. A positron is created when a proton is converted into a neutron and a positron in the nucleus:
The beta radiation, in which positrons are emitted, is also called positron radiation or asβ+-radiation designated.
Gamma radiation is short wavelength electromagnetic radiation. The wavelength is smaller than10- 10m, the frequency greater than 3 ⋅1018thHz. This radiation is, therefore, at the short-wave end of the spectrum of electromagnetic waves.
In contrast to alpha and beta radiation, the composition of the atomic nucleus does not change with gamma radiation. However, the core moves from a more energetic (excited) state to an energetically lower and, therefore, mostly more stable state. This is comparable to the emission of light, where the active form of atoms also changes but not their composition. However, the processes do not occur in the atomic nucleus but in the atomic shell with light.
Radioactive radiation has several properties that are important for its effects, detection, and applications. A distinction must be made between alpha radiation, beta radiation, and gamma radiation.
These three types of radiation can be beneficial for a human being, for example, in the health sector. The radiation shielding is, of course, plays an important role here.