Radiation is a process in which energetic particles or energetic waves travel through a medium or space. The particles or waves radiate (i.e., travel outward in all directions) from a source.

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Why does positronium decay into 2 photons more often than into 3 photons?

I cannot find the answer to the above question. I know that para-positronium is created with a probability of $25\%$ and decays into 2 photons, while ortho-positronium is created with a probability ...
17
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2answers
3k views

Why doesn't the evening/morning sun feel much hotter on your face?

I understand that places on the Earth's surface get hotter in summer, and in the middle of the day rather than morning or evening, because the surface of the Earth is presented 'face-on' to the Sun at ...
2
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2answers
185 views

By what maximum amount can we concentrate sunlight?

This refers to a previous question re: Solar Cell Systems and as part of the answer the statement: If we concentrated sunlight to [the] maximum amount 42600× was given. My questions are: By what ...
2
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1answer
194 views

Increasing the efficiency of solar cell systems

As far as I know, there are currently two main approaches to utilising solar radiation for maximum energy conversion to electricity. These are either direct conversion to electricity, using ...
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1answer
57 views

Surfaces that reflect UV rays

I've been trying to research what surfaces reflect UV rays for the past day but it's been difficult coming up with definitive answers. So far what I've found is that surfaces that reflect visible ...
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1answer
33 views

Carbon 14 disintegration

When $\beta^-$ disintegration happens to a Carbon 14 atom, a neutron "turns into" a proton, and an electron is emitted. Therefore the result of the disintegration is a Nitrogen atom plus an electron ...
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1answer
59 views

What is the energy threshhold to produce Cherenkov radiation?

I am in a nuclear course right now and am getting some misleading information from different sources. I am trying to figure out what the minimum total energy is that a proton must have in order to ...
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2answers
50 views

How does “contamination” through (radioactive) radiation work?

Physically, what does it mean when people or objects are contaminated with radiation? Is it because they actually carrying heavy metal particles?
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1answer
500 views

Does tin foil keep heat out?

For example, if i were mailing a box of chocolates and lined the inside of the box with foil, then wrapped the chocolate in bubble wrap and placed it inside the foil lined box, would the box heat up ...
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1answer
181 views

Relationship between temperature and wavelength?

I am investigating the relationship between wavelength and temperature. As seen the figure below of Planks law What is the relationship between the lambda(max) and Temperature? or in simpler ...
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1answer
28 views

Does the W boson in beta decay affect the gravity generated by the system?

During beta decay we now know a heavy W boson gets involved temporarily. Would this potentially impact the gravitational field generated by the system as a whole? It doesn't seem like it should. Just ...
0
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1answer
42 views

X-ray background radiation

I'm running an experiment in gamma-ray imaging (although the main emission from the decay of Am-241 is ~60keV, so much more in the range of x-rays). I'm curious as to the sort of sources that would ...
0
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0answers
39 views

beta minus decay: expression for maximum electron energy

I'm having some trouble finding an expression for the maximum electron energy in beta minus decay. In the frame where the neutron is initially at rest, conservation of momentum reads: ...
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1answer
37 views

Background gamma radiation

There are plenty of lists of sources of general background radiation, but can anyone reduce that list to the major contributing sources purely for background gamma radiation (specifically low energy, ...
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1answer
39 views

What process happens in an IT nuclear decay?

I've been researching medical isotopes and alot of them decay by an IT path. Does anyone know what IT stands for? And what physical process is happening? Example: ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What is the required thickness of concrete needed to entomb a leaking reactors emissions?

What is the minimum thickness of an aggregate concrete membrane to prevent radioactive particles from escaping a broken reactor? I am interested in calculating the amount of concrete required to ...
2
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2answers
122 views

Why the CMB has not been dispersed so far?

Imagine you have a box of black body radiation. What happens if you open the box for a long time? It becomes dispersed and no radiation remains in the box. Now, apply this example to the Cosmic ...
2
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2answers
351 views

Why do microwave ovens use radiation with such long wavelength?

According to Wikipedia: Consumer ovens usually use 2.45 gigahertz (GHz)—a wavelength of 12.2 centimetres (4.80 in). Typically, I put the dish inside the oven in its center. I suspect most ...
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2answers
87 views

Lethal dose of Gy's (Grays)

The unit Gray has the dimensions $\text{J/kg}$. I've read, that a dose of about 3-5 Gy's could kill a person within a few weeks - or at least that's usually the case. But I'm not really understanding ...
2
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0answers
42 views

How do experimental physicists know the decay path of transuranium elements ahead of time?

I have been watching (and enjoying) Dr. Poliakoff's YouTube videos on the synthesis of transuranium elements like Roentgenium and Copernicium, which decay so quickly that they are identified (if I ...
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2answers
39 views

Radiometric dating calculation [closed]

If a sample of zircon initially contains no Lead, find an expression for the ratio $$\frac{N_U}{N_{Pb}}$$ as a function of time? How do I do simplifications from this? Do I just go: ...
0
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2answers
36 views

Is the screen in CRT connected with a positive pole?

I don't understand this passage would you clarify it? "These electrons are then freed (liberated) from the metal and are then picked up by the screen, which is connected to a positive pole called the ...
1
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1answer
51 views

Working out the penetration of radioactive decay products

From my understanding of the products of radioactive decay (alpha particles, beta particles, and gamma are all I know of), the particles (or energy I guess?) are stopped by a medium according to it's ...
0
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0answers
39 views

Continuum Wave Function for the electron

I'm trying to understand certain processes like the photoelectric effect and Bremsstrahlung. In Bremsstrahlung I need to use the wave function of an electron coming from the continuum, and there is ...
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3answers
2k views

How does radiation shielding using absorbing materials work?

I understand that, for example, a thick enough sheet of lead can absorb gamma radiation, but I want to understand what actually happens at the molecular/atomic/subatomic level. Also, can the same ...
0
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1answer
52 views

Spin and parity transition levels gamma radiation

Just a quick question regarding spin and parity. I am studying nuclear physics and I am just a tad confused with a concept about gamma radiation. Say I have ${^{20}_{10}Ne}$ And the lowest electric ...
0
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2answers
74 views

Where does the “Illumination Formula” come from?

I've been studying for the pGRE for the past couple of weeks (what a load of... nevermind), and one of the questions requires the use of what is apparently deemed the illumination formula, used to ...
0
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0answers
41 views

thresholds for Cherenkov radiation visible to the human eye

In pool-type fission reactors, the beautiful Cherenkov radiation from the beta decay of intermediate products seems to be a well-understood phenomenon. I am wondering what some ballpark figures are ...
2
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0answers
77 views

Why does a damped quantum harmonic oscillator have the same decay rate as the equivalent classical system?

$\newcommand{ket}[1]{|#1\rangle} \newcommand{bbraket}[3]{\langle #1 | #2 | #3 \rangle}$ Why does the decay rate for a damped quantum harmonic oscillator exactly match the classical limit? Background ...
2
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3answers
108 views

Why do neutrons decay after 6 minutes?

If I understand correctly, Beta decay only occurs when an atom (or in this case subatomic particle) is unstable. Are neutrons consider unstable? If so why? And if they are not unstable is there is ...
2
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1answer
67 views

Would the blue glow of Cherenkov radiation be visible when diffused across ice, such as in the IceCube neutrino experiment?

The blue glow characteristic of Cherenkov radiation is visible emanating from underwater reactors. Is it also visible through ice, at the IceCube neutrino experiment (not that anyone is physically ...
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1answer
131 views

Emissivity of vacuum for radiation heat

What is the heat radiation emissivity of vacuum? For air as well? What is the difference? I understand that the vacuum has reflectivity of 0, So what is the other two values are in $$ reflectivity + ...
3
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3answers
159 views

How to block neutrons

What is a good way to block neutrons and what is the mechanism that allows this? It's my understanding that polyethylene is somewhat effective. Why?
2
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1answer
118 views

How would the explosion from a Pure Fusion Bomb differ from the explosion from a Fission Nuclear Bomb?

Suppose we have the technology to create high enough temperatures and pressures inside a confined space to fuse together deuterium and tritium, and create a Pure Fusion Bomb. How would the explosion ...
2
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1answer
55 views

pGRE question on natural line width

The lifetime for the $2p \rightarrow 1s$ transition in hydrogen is $1.6 \times 10^{-9}$ s. The natural line width for the radiation emitted during the transition is approximately... Their solution: ...
2
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1answer
529 views

Deriving Gamow factor for potential with effective centrifugal potential term

I am looking at deriving an expression for the Gamow factor for $\alpha$-decay. I understand that the potential is the sum of the nuclear, electric and effective potentials: $$V(r) = V_N(r)+V_c(r) ...
0
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1answer
70 views

Reactive near field for Wireless Power Transfer (WPT)

In literature it is stated that in reactive near field using high-Q coils in resonance the efficiency does not depend on coupling (ie. distance) and that coupling only has influence on rate of energy ...
25
votes
6answers
3k views

Is a suit that hides a soldier's heat signature fundamentally possible?

I recently played "Crysis", a game where the protagonist wears a suit that allows the player to hide both himself and his heat signature. Then I watched Iron Man 3, where a kid suggests that Tony ...
0
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0answers
30 views

What is a high brilliance X-Ray and how is one created

I just found this term being used in a Stanford Engineering year in review 2013-2014 "X-rays illuminate path to more efficient fuel cells" that cited this work. Never heard the term before and I came ...
0
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4answers
405 views

Can there be energy with no force or energy with no power?

I think that both force (number of newtons) and power (p=ui(?)) implies that there is energy so we can't have force without energy and we can't have power without energy(?) But can there be energy ...
3
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2answers
137 views

Does positron-electron annihilation preserve enough info to reverse exactly

An electron-positron annihilation can produce a pair of gamma rays. In the reverse process, known as pair production, can the gamma rays carry enough information to determine the resulting ...
3
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3answers
272 views

Question on Radiance equation

The radiance equation is $$ L = \frac{d}{dA} \frac{2(\phi)}{dW cos(\theta)} (watt/srm^2) $$ where $\phi$ is the flux. I am thinking, should not be the cosine term on the numerator instead of the ...
0
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3answers
103 views

We don't know when a nucleus will decay. Then how can find its half life? [duplicate]

I mean how can we say that in 5730 years, 1/2 the no. of C14 nucleus will decay because in reality we don't know when a particular nucleus will decay
4
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1answer
435 views

What is the temperature of the clear night sky from the surface of Earth?

Before you all jump in with 2.73 K or thereabouts, this is more of an experimental question. It will obviously depend on humidity and radiation being scattered back towards the surface of the Earth. ...
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1answer
70 views

Highest background gamma ray energy?

What is the highest naturally occurring gamma ray energy that you would see in background? And what is it is source?
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votes
1answer
86 views

how safe is using the remote car toy from radiation [closed]

how safe is using the remote car toy from radiation, especially for kids, The manufacturers claiming that it will be safe, but is that 100 % safe over kids.
0
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1answer
98 views

Energy of resultant photons from meson decay

I am a little unsure how to answer the following question, Find the energies of two photons emitted in opposite directions along the pion's original line of motion if the pion has a r.m.e of 500MEV ...
2
votes
2answers
164 views

Solar spectrum units

Why is intensity $I$ on a graph of the solar spectrum always showed in units of $[\mathrm{W/m^2/nm}]$ instead of simply $[\mathrm{W/m^2}]$? (The y-axis on the graph.) It is apparently shown as ...
1
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0answers
32 views

Are the Van Allen belts important to life? [closed]

Is it significant for life on Earth? Mars doesn't have this. Why do experts think there may be life on it? What kind of life form could live on Mars? This article I just read got me wondering. A ...
0
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0answers
19 views

What are the principle factors that limit $\beta$ decay to elements with atomic number, Z 100 or less?

I learned for the first time in Eric Scerri's new book A Tale of 7 Elements that $\beta$ decay does not occur for elements with atomic number, Z > 100. I did some further web research on this subject ...