Radioactive Iodine-131 can be used to study the function of the thyroid gland assisting in detecting disease.
Nuclear reactors are devices that control fission reactions producing new substances from the fission product and energy.
Radioactive sources are used to study living organisms, to diagnose and treat diseases, to sterilize medical instruments and food, to produce energy for heat and electric power, and to monitor various steps in all types of industrial processes. A tracer is a radioactive element whose pathway through which a chemical reaction can be followed.
We will talk about transmutation in more detail a little later.
There are many practical applications to the use of radioactivity/radiation.
Atoms with unstable nuclei are constantly changing as a result of the imbalance of energy within the nucleus.
When the nucleus loses a neutron, it gives off energy and is said to be radioactive.
Because this is done with high energy radiation sources using electromagnetic energy, there is no fear of residual radiation.
Also, the instruments and food may be handled without fear of radiation poisoning.Recall our discussion earlier about the fission process in the making of a radioisotope.Nuclear power stations use uranium in fission reactions as a fuel to produce energy.Radioactivity is the release of energy and matter that results from changes in the nucleus of an atom.On an earlier page covering isotopes it was learned that isotopes are variants of an element that, while all having the same number of protons, have differing numbers of neutrons. Because the like charges of the protons repel each other,there are always forces trying to push the atom nucleus apart.and is now the principal source of information about the absolute age of rocks and other geological features, including the age of fossilized life forms or the age of the Earth itself, and can also be used to date a wide range of natural and man-made materials.