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  • Brief History of Radioactivity
  • Properties and Characteristics of Radiation
  • Uses of Radioactivity

 Brief History of Radioactivity

MEANING OF RADIOACTIVITY: This means the natural dissipation of radioactive element by half after every specific number of years or period of time say 20 years etc.  The nuclei of certain elements are not stable; hence they disintegrate and simultaneously emit certain kinds of radiation, and in the process, change into nuclei of other elements. This phenomenon is known as radioactivity.

Definition of Radioactivity: Radioactivity is the spontaneous disintegration of atomic nuclei by the emission of subatomic particles called alpha particles and beta particles, or of electromagnetic rays called x-rays and gamma rays.


The phenomenon of radioactivity was discovered in 1896 by the French Physicist by name Antoine Henri Becquerel when he observed that the element of Uranium can blacken a photographic plate, although separated from it by glass or black paper. Some few years later, Marie and Pierre Curie husband and wife showed that thorium, polonium, and radium also produce these rays.


  • Uranium
  • Thorium
  • Polonium
  • Radium
  • Potassium
  • Rubidium
  • Francium
  • Plutonium
  • Astatine
  • Protactinium

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