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Atomic Structure and the Periodic Table


Presenter G. Delapenha 13/9/11

Atoms consist of a number of fundamental particles, the most important are ...
Particle proton neutron electron Relative Mass 1 1 1/1836 charge +1 0 -1 Position nucleus nucleus Outside nucleus

Subatomic particles in an Electric Field

proton neutron electron

Behaviour in an Electric Field

A neutron is not deflected because it is neutral A proton is deflected toward the negative plate because it is positively charged it is deflected less because it is heavier An electron is deflected towards the positive plate because it is negatively charged it is deflected more than a proton because it is lighter

Behaviour in Magnetic Fields

A neutron is not deflected because it is neutral Protons and electrons are deflected electrons are deflected more because they are lighter



Question 1. Complete the table

Atoms with ... the same atomic number but different mass number or the same number of protons but different numbers of neutrons. Chemical properties of isotopes are identical

What is Radioactivity? and why does it happen? The nucleus is composed of protons and neutrons and glued together by a strong nuclear force. BUT only certain combinations of neutrons and protons seem to be stable.

stability curve Any isotope that does not lie in the stability band with a stable neutron/proton (n/p) ratio is likely to be radioactive!

results from the random and spontaneous breakdown of the unstable nucleus of an atom.

Radioactive elements emit THREE(3) kinds of radiation

Alpha Beta Gamma

Each differs in charge, mass, and penetrating power

Alpha Particles
Consists of 2 protons and 2 neutrons and is identical to a helium-4 nucleus Can be represented by the symbol

Properties of Alpha Particles

Weak penetrating power. are able to travel only a few cm through air - easily stopped by paper or clothing Not normally harmful to humans

Beta Particles
Are high-speed electrons A neutron changes into a proton and an electron
The proton remains in the nucleus and the electron is propelled out of the nucleus


Properties of Beta Particles

The mass number is zero
100 times more penetrating then alpha radiation Can damage the skin

Gamma Rays

Are highly energetic light, similar to xrays

Symbolized by:

Properties of Gamma Rays

Does not consist of particles accompanies alpha and beta radiation Much more penetrating than either of a or b able to penetrate deeply into solid material, including body tissue

Properties of Some Radiations

Property Alpha Radiation Beta Radiation Gamma Radiation

Symbol Charge Mass (amu)

Alpha Particle
4 a, 2 He

Beta Particle
0 b, e -1

High-energy photon

2+ 4


Properties of Some Radiations

Property Alpha Radiation Beta Radiation Gamma Radiation

Common Radium- Carbon-14 source 226


Appox. energy Power Shielding

5 MeV
(0.05mm body tissue)


0.05 to 1 MeV Moderate

(4mm body tissue)

Very high
(penetrates body easily)

Paper, clothing

Metal foil

Lead, concrete

Radioactive Decay
When an atom emits one of these kinds of radiation, it is said to be decaying. An atom may undergo an alpha or beta decay. The radiation is called decay because the nucleus decomposes to form a new nucleus, called transmutation The best way to understand a decay is with a nuclear equation

Alpha Decay Equations

mass number of the parent atom

decreases by 4
Atomic number decreases by 2.

Beta Decay Equations

Atomic number increases by 1

Using Radiation
Although radiation can be harmful, it can be used safely & is important in many procedures
Radioisotopes called tracers are used to study chem rxns and molecular structures Also they can be used to study the inner workings of the body

Using Radiation
One of the reactants is labeled with a radioisotope and added to the rxn mixture After the rxn is complete, the radiation of the product is measured to determine the uptake of the tracer
Using this technique, much can be learned about the reaction mechanism

Using Radiation
Tracers are used in agricultural research
The tracer is introduced to the substance being tested Plants are treated with the radioactive labeled substance Tracer measured to determine the location of the substance Often the tracer is also monitored in animals that consume the plants, in water, and in soil.

Radioisotopes can even be used to diagnose diseases

- I-131, is used to detect thyroid problems - Tc-99 is used to detect brain tumors & liver disorders - P-32 is used to detect skin cancer

Using Radiation

Tl-207 scan of the heart

Using Radiation
Radiation has become a routine part of the treatment of some cancer
- The fast-growing cancer cells are more susceptible to damage by highenergy radiation killing the cancer cells - Unfortunately if it isnt used localized to the cancer cells it can kill healthy cells as well.

Assignment 1





Answers for slide 7