Learn the basics about radioactive isotopes.
The identity and chemical properties of any atom are determined by the number of protons in its nucleus. As atoms get bigger and heavier, the nuclei get bigger and heavier and the protons need a “nuclear glue” to help hold them together.
Neutrons provide this glue and prevent the positive charges of protons from repelling each other, thanks to something called the strong nuclear force.
Elements can exist with slightly different numbers of neutrons. We call these isotopes of an element.
The number of protons in isotopes of one element will always be the same; this means that the element is unchanged and so will react chemically in exactly the same way.
There is often more than one stable isotope of an element. Much of the world around us is made up of stable isotopes. However, sometimes there aren’t enough neutrons in a nucleus or there are too many for it to be stable.
Nuclei will try to stabilise themselves. If there are too many protons or too many neutrons, the nucleus can spontaneously rearrange itself and throw out particles in the process. This is essentially what happens in radioactive decay.
Isotopes that have unstable nuclei are known as radioactive isotopes or radioisotopes. The more unstable a nucleus, the faster it will try to rearrange itself into a more stable state. This is known as radioactive decay.
Radioisotopes are often used in medicine to trace aspects of body chemistry or blood flow. Atoms of radioisotopes can act as “markers”, allowing chemists to follow how a reaction sequence occurs. Radioisotopes are also used in radiotherapy to kill malignant cancer cells.
SUBSCRIBE to the Fuse School YouTube channel for many more educational videos. Our teachers and animators come together to make fun & easy-to-understand videos in Chemistry, Biology, Physics, Maths & ICT.
JOIN our platform at www.fuseschool.org
This video is part of 'Chemistry for All' - a Chemistry Education project by our Charity Fuse Foundation - the organisation behind FuseSchool. These videos can be used in a flipped classroom model or as a revision aid. Find our other Chemistry videos here:
Access a deeper Learning Experience in the Fuse School platform and app: www.fuseschool.org
Follow us: http://www.youtube.com/fuseschool
Friend us: http://www.facebook.com/fuseschool
This Open Educational Resource is free of charge, under a Creative Commons License: Attribution-NonCommercial CC BY-NC ( View License Deed: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ ). You are allowed to download the video for nonprofit, educational use. If you would like to modify the video, please contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tagged under: Science,Chemistry,learn,Revision,GCSE,Alevels,AQA,students free online courses video science videos,student,fuseschool,global education,ict4d,radioactive isotopes,radioactive,protons,nucleus,isotopes,radiotherapy,unstable,radioactive decay,radioisotopes,deuterium,tritium,neutrons
Clip makes it super easy to turn any public video into a formative assessment activity in your classroom.
Add multiple choice quizzes, questions and browse hundreds of approved, video lesson ideas for Clip
Make YouTube one of your teaching aids - Works perfectly with lesson micro-teaching plans
1. Students enter a simple code
2. You play the video
3. The students comment
4. You review and reflect
* Whiteboard required for teacher-paced activities
With four apps, each designed around existing classroom activities, Spiral gives you the power to do formative assessment with anything you teach.
Carry out a quickfire formative assessment to see what the whole class is thinking
Create interactive presentations to spark creativity in class
Student teams can create and share collaborative presentations from linked devices
Turn any public video into a live chat with questions and quizzes