Radiation and Half-Life

Aarushi Jain
Mind Map by Aarushi Jain, updated more than 1 year ago
Aarushi Jain
Created by Aarushi Jain over 3 years ago
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IGCSE Physics Mind Map on Radiation and Half-Life, created by Aarushi Jain on 11/13/2016.

Resource summary

Radiation and Half-Life
1 Detecting Ionising Radiation
1.1 Photographic film
1.1.1 Becquerel (Bq) - unit of radioactivity
1.1.2 Measures how many unstable nuclei disintegrating in one second
1.2 Geiger-Muller Tube
1.2.1 Detects radiation
2 Background Radiation
2.1 What
2.1.1 Low level ionising radiation
2.1.2 Produced all the time E.G. ground and buildings, radon, medical, etc.
2.2 Natural background radiation from Earth
2.2.1 Radon, thoron
2.2.2 Build up in basements and foundations of buildings
2.3 Natural background radiation from space
2.3.1 Cosmic rays from exploding stars called supernovae or given by Sun
2.4 Internal radiation
2.4.1 Atoms making up bodies formed in violent reactions in beginning of Universe
2.4.2 Some atoms radioactive so we carry radiation
2.4.3 When breath in, take in tiny amounts of carbon-14 so renew amount of radioactive carbon in bodies
2.5 Artificial radiation
2.5.1 Generating electricity in nuclear power stations has leaked radioactive material in environment
2.5.2 Testing nuclear weapons in atmosphere increase no of radioactive isotopes on Earth
2.5.3 Radioactive tracers in industry and medicine
3 Radioactive Decay
3.1 What
3.1.1 Random process
3.1.2 Nucleus of an unstable atom loses energy by emitting radiation, including alpha particles, beta particles, gamma rays.
3.2 Exponential decay
3.2.1 The smaller the quantity, the more slowly the quantity decreases
3.2.2 Rate of decay would fall as time passes because fewer nuclei to decay
4 Half-Life
4.1 What
4.1.1 Average time taken for half the original mass of the sample to decay
4.1.2 Different for different radioactive isotopes
4.2 Measuring half-life
4.2.1 Use GM tube
4.2.2 Rate of decay, corrected for background radiation, proportional to amount of radioactive isotope present
4.2.3 Isotopes with short half lives used for medical purposes
4.2.4 Isotopes with long half lives used for dating samples of organic material
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