A45 - disintegrate and emit radiation The elements formed as the products of nuclear reactions will be different then the starting element Three

Info iconThis preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Nuclear Chemistry The nuclei of most naturally occurring elements are very stable in spite of the fact that the protons in the nucleus repel each other because of electrical repulsion. Some nuclei with certain ratios of neutrons to protons and nuclei with large numbers of neutrons and protons are not stable. These nuclei undergo radioactive decay in order to achieve a more stable nuclear structure. These unstable elements are called radioisotopes . Nuclear reactions involve changes in the composition of the nucleus of an atom. Radioactivity is the term for this process in which the nuclei of certain heavy atoms
Background image of page 1
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Unformatted text preview: disintegrate and emit radiation. The elements formed as the products of nuclear reactions will be different then the starting element. Three types of radiation are given off by naturally occurring radioactive compounds. These types of radiation were given the names of the first three letters of the Greek alphabet. ..alpha, beta and gamma . The nucleus of an atom is changed when it emits either an alpha or a beta particle. The atomic number is altered in both cases. ..remember that it is the atomic number that determines the identity of an element....
View Full Document

This note was uploaded on 04/28/2010 for the course ENGN 45 taught by Professor Wendy during the Fall '09 term at City College of San Francisco.

Ask a homework question - tutors are online