Radioactive decay, also known as radioactivity, is the process by which a
nucleus of an unstable atom loses energy by emitting particles of ionizing
radiation. A material that spontaneously emits energetic alpha particles,
beta particles, and gamma rays is considered radioactive.
Though the most massive and most energetic of radioactive emissions, the
alpha particle is the shortest in range because of its strong interaction
with matter. The electromagnetic gamma ray is extremely penetrating, even
penetrating considerable thicknesses of concrete. The electron of beta
radioactivity strongly interacts with matter and has a short range.
Radioactive material is found throughout nature. Detectable amounts occurs
naturally in the soil, rocks, water, air, and vegetation, from which it is
inhaled and ingested into the body. The biggest source of natural background
radiation is airborne radon, a radioactive gas that emanates from the
ground. In addition to this internal exposure, humans are also constantly
bombarded by radiation from outer space (Cosmic radiation). Radionuclides
can also be produced artificially e.g. using particle accelerators or
In my presentation I will show with experiments how radioactivity can be
detected and even visualized.