The process of radioactive dating
Since radioactive decay is a random process, the decay of a single nucleus may happen at any time but for many undecayed nuclei, the average decay rate is given by the decay constant, λ and it has the unit of [s.On the basis of our reasoning above we can say that the number which will decay will depend on overall number of nuclei, N, and also on the length of the brief period of time.The elements with atomic number greater than 82 are radioactive.The is a measure of how quickly on average a radioactive nuclei will take to decay.The name 'radioactive' may suggest to you that radioactive elements radiate radio waves, but unfortunately that is not so!The name 'radioactivity' is a misnomer because these elements have nothing to do with radio waves! To understand radioactivity, we need to explore the structure of an atomic nucleus.Geological processes have helped to create many iconic features on Earth.
This article has a comprehensive list of radioactive elements and their properties.
This is the second lesson in a three-lesson series about isotopes, radioactive decay, and the nucleus.
The first lesson, Isotopes of Pennies, introduces the idea of isotopes.
Classical Electromagnetism cannot explain radioactivity. It's a spontaneous and random phenomenon whereby nuclei of certain chemical elements like Uranium, radiate gamma rays (high frequency electromagnetic radiation), beta particles (electrons or positrons) and alpha particles (Helium Nuclei).
By the emission of these particles and radiation, the unstable nucleus gets converted into a stabler nucleus. The Term 'Radioactive' - A Misnomer A radioactive element is a fundamental element whose atomic nuclei demonstrates the phenomenon of radioactivity.