Don’t get active, GET RADIOACTIVE

When “people” talk about radiation, it is almost always with concern. Whether it is “radiation from mobile phones/towers”  to “a bite from a radioactive spider” to “radiation from microwaves” the concern is always there. But what is radiation exactly?

Well if you use google and type in “define: radiation” the first response is:

Energy that is radiated or transmitted in the form of rays or waves or particles

So, for example, any object that gives off heat (a form of energy) is radiating! This means that you are a source of radiation!

But that’s not what we are talking about in this unit – we are specifically talking about nuclear radiation, which according to movies apparently causes things to glow green and possibly develop superpowers (exposing yourself to radiation to try and become Wolverine is not recommended!)

But this is not the way nuclear radiation actually works (suprise suprise, movies have gotten it wrong again. And again. And again! Maybe they should just give up…). Amazingly enough, after just two weeks of Physics, you know more about radiation than 90% of the Earth’s population!

Here is a slideshow that covers more than what you need to know (up to slide 34 is the end of the current topic)

And here are a series of videos (link)that get into some details of what you need to know. Watch them ALL!

And you need to read this comic!

See you in class!

ps. I expect to see you commenting and asking questions through this blog! This is your chance to get use to interacting with your teacher (lecturers soon!) through a virtual forum – something you will have to do when you get to uni!

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7 Comments on “Don’t get active, GET RADIOACTIVE”

  1. Kane L Says:

    hello,
    When an atom goes into an alpha or beta decay, how do we determine the element it turns into? I understand that when there is a change in protons it changes the element, but i am unsure on how we determine the resulting element.

    Thank you.

  2. CyberChalky Says:

    When you find the atomic number of the product after decay, consult a periodic table to find the element symbol that has that atomic number.

    Here is a good periodic table:
    http://www.webelements.com/

    • Kane L Says:

      Thanks for the response, i knew that this was it but in one of the revision questions i got kind of confused due to a bad quality periodic table, (School Diary Periodic Table).

  3. Deepti Says:

    hello sir,
    This page is really helpful for me and can undestand the main things about atoms.

  4. Cyberchalky! Says:

    [...] if you have explored the blog, you will have found the previous posts I have made about radiation (1, 2), in which case you will know more than your classmates – which is always a good [...]


  5. [...] have written many posts on this blog about nuclear power (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) (you may want to pay particular attention to the comment streams…). Not only is [...]


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