- There are four different types of radiation:
- Alpha radiation - Very large and slow moving radiation. The least dangerous type of radiation.
- Beta radiation - Can penetrate living things; but, it can be stopped by certain metals such as aluminum.
- Electromagnetic radiation - Has a long history in the medical field including x-rays. Fast moving and can penetrate everything except concrete or lead.
- Neutron radiation -Can penetrate various types of deep matter. Very fast moving.
- The specific process by which radiation is emitted in a nuclear reaction is called fission.
- The heat produced in the fission process powers steam turbines, which in turn power generators that give us electricity.
- Radioactive waste, which is produced as nuclear reactors generate electrical power, has to be removed and stored with great care because it is detrimental to humans and the environment.
- Over a very long period of time, radioactive waste will eventually lose its radioactive qualities and will no longer be dangerous material.
- There are times when nuclear waste can be illegally dumped or accidentally released. The land and bodies of water around the dump site will become contaminated and the location will be rendered inhabitable to human beings.
- Radiation exists naturally in very low levels that the human body and the environment can sustain without being harmed.
- Radiation from nuclear reactions can cause nausea and migraines, and, as the levels increase, the effects are much more damaging.
- As the level of radiation rises, radiation can cause hair loss, loss of white blood cells (making casualties of radiation even more susceptible to infections), and can result in death.
Nuclear radiation is defined as the energy particles or rays that are given off from a radioactive element, such as uranium, as it decays.
Facts About Nuclear Radiation
An example of nuclear radiation are radioactive cesium particles that contaminated water around the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan.