# Nuclear Equations Flashcards

1
Q

what are nuclear equations

A

a way of showing radioactive decay using element symbols

2
Q

what form are nuclear equations written in

A

atom before decay = (arrow) atom after decay + radiation emitted

3
Q

what is the main thing to look out for when writing these equations

A

the total mass and atomic numbers must be the same on both sides

4
Q

how does a nucleus that has emitted an alpha particle change

A
• the mass number decreases by 4

- the atomic number decreases by 2

5
Q

how would an element with a mass number of 226 and an atomic number of 88 change if it were to emit an alpha particle

A
• mass number: 226 = 222 + 4

- atomic number: 88 = 86 + 2

6
Q

what specifically happens to the nucleus during beta minus decay

A

a neutron changes unto a proton and an electron

7
Q

how does the nucleus that has emitted a beta minus particle change

A
• the mass number doesnt change as it has lost a neutron but gained a proton
• the atomic number increases by one as you have one more proton
8
Q

how would an element with a mass number of 14 and an atomic number of 6 change if it were to emit a beta minus particle

A
• mass number: 14 = 14 + 0

- atomic number: 6 = 7 + -1

9
Q

A
• they are types of radiation which change the actual element itself
• as they change the number of protons in the nucleus
10
Q

what specifically happens to the nucleus during positron or beta plus decay

A

a proton changes into as neutron and a positron

11
Q

how does the nucleus that has emitted a positron change

A
• the mass number doesnt change as it has lost a proton but gained a neutron
• the atomic number decreases by one as it has one less proton
12
Q

how would an element with a mass number of 18 and an atomic number of 9 change if it were to emit a positron

A
• mass number: 18 = 18 + 0

- atomic number: 9 = 8 + 1

13
Q

how does the nucleus change when it emits a neutron

A
• the mass number decreases by 1 as it has lost a neutron

- the atomic number stays the same

14
Q

how would an element with a mass number of 13 and an atomic number of 4 change if it were to emit a neutron

A
• mass number: 13 = 12 + 1

- atomic number: 4 = 4 + 0

15
Q

why do the mass and atomic numbers stay the same after a gamma ray has been emitted

A
• because gamma radiation is a way of getting rid of excess energy from an atom
• the nucleus only goes from an excited state to a more stable one by doing this
• this energy doesnt have any mass or electrostatic properties