AQA GCSE Physics Radioactive decay and nuclear radiation

This is all about the properties of alpha, beta and gamma radiation

This BBC Bitesize page will help with nuclear radiation.

Free science lesson videos are also super helpful.

This extract from the specification will also be super useful.

Extract from AQA GCSE Physics Specification on Radioactive Decay and Radiation

Specification focussed questions and Audio Answers

Audio Answers
  1. Copy and complete: Some atomic nuclei are ____________. 
  2. What do nuclei give out as it changes to become more stable? 
  3. Radioactive decay is a random process. Explain this sentence. 
  4. What is meant by the activity of a radioactive source? In this answer, you have to explain the term rate. 
  5. What is the unit of activity? 
  6. What is meant by the count rate of a radioactive source? 
  7. What device is the count rate measured by? 
  8. What is an alpha particle? 
  9. Why can an alpha particle be written as a helium nucleus? 
  10. What is a beta particle? 
  11. What does a neutron turn into for a beta particle to be emitted? 
  12. What is a gamma-ray? 
  13. State a fourth type of nuclear radiation. 
  14. What are the greek symbols for an alpha, beta and gamma radiation? 
  15. Find out about the penetration of alpha, beta and gamma through different materials. 
  16. Find out about the range in air of alpha, beta and gamma radiation. 
  17. Find out about the ionising power of alpha, beta and gamma radiation. 

Watch this video about how an alpha source is used in smoke alarms

Watch this video about how beta is used to quality ensure paper thickness in paper-making factories


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