Chemistry

Structure of the Atom


Applications of Radioactive Isotopes


Radioactive isotopes are widely used in medicine to diagnose,study and treat various ailments.They are also used in power plants and in industry.Some of the important applications (or uses) of radioactive isotopes are given below.
1.Radioactive isotopes are used as a fuel in nuclear reactors of nuclear power plants for generating electricity.
Uranium-235 isotope is used as a fuel in the reactors of nuclear power plants for generating electricity.This is done as follows : When uranium-235 atoms are bombarded with slow moving neutrons, the heavy uranium nuclei break up to form two smaller nuclei and a tremendous amount of heat energy is produced.This heat energy is used to boil water in big boilers to form steam. The high pressure steam turns the turbines. The turbines run the generators to produce electricity. The process in which big uranium-235 nuclei are broken into smaller nuclei to obtain energy is called nuclear fission.The radioactive isotopes such as uranium-235 and plutonium-239 are also used for making atom bombs(or nuclear bombs).
2.Radioactive isotopes are used as 'tracers'in medicine to detect the presence of tumors and blood clots, etc.,in the human body.A small amount of the low activity radioactive compound (called tracer) is either injected into the body of a person or given orally.This radioactive compound moves through the body and accumulates in the area of tumor, blood clot, etc.The exact position of the accumulated radioactive tracer can be found with the help of a device called Geiger counter.This gives the exact position of the tumor or blood clot and is of great help to the doctors for deciding further treatment.Arsenic-74 tracer is used to detect the presence of tumors and sodium-24 tracer is used to detect the presence of blood clots.
3.Radioactive isotopes are used in the treatment of cancer.
Cobalt-60 radioisotope is used to cure cancer.When the high energy gamma radiations emitted by cobalt-60 radioisotopes are directed at the cancerous tumor in the human body,the cancerous cells get burnt.The treatment of cancer by using radioactive radiations is called radiotherapy.
4.Radioactive isotopes are used to determine the activity of thyroid gland which helps in the treatment of diseases like goitre.
Doctors use iodine-131 radioisotope as a tracer to find how and at what rate the thyroid gland in our body takes up iodine (which is essential for making thyroxine hormone). This helps in the treatment of diseases like goitre.
5.Radioactive isotopes are used in industry to detect the leakage in underground oil pipelines, gas pipelines and water pipes.
To check the leakage in a metal pipeline,a solution of the radioactive substance is introduced in the pipeline. At the place of crack in the pipeline, the radioactive solution will leak out, and the radioactive detector (called Geiger counter) will indicate a higher level of radiations.

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Notes


Structure of the Atom - Notes
1. Drawback of Rutherford’s Model of the Atom
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2. Rutherford’s Experiment - Discovery of Nucleus
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3. Comparison between Proton, Neutron and Electron
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4. Characteristics of a Proton
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5. 3.Isotopes of Oxygen.
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6. For the symbols H, D and T,tabulate three sub-atomic particles found in each of them.
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7. How to learn naming Chemical Formulae?
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8. Limitations of Rutherford's model of the atom
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9. 4.Isotopes of Neon.
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10. Characteristics of a Neutron
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11. 2.Isotopes of Carbon.
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12. Characteristics of an Electron
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13. Structure of The Atom - Study Points
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14. 1. Isotopes of Hydrogen.
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15. (d) Valency of Chlorine
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16. (d) Covalency of Nitrogen
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17. Radioactive Isotopes
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18. All about Names of the Chemical Elements
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19. Nucleus
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20. (a) Valency of Sodium
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21. Arrangement Of Electrons In The Atoms
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22. (b) Valency of Magnesium
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23. Mass Number
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24. Thomson's Model Of The Atom
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25. Discovery of Neutron
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26. Rutherford's Model Of The Atom
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27. 2.Covalency
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28. Covalency of Oxygen
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29. Bohr's Model Of The Atom
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30. Electronic Configurations of First 20 Elements
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31. Isotopes
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32. (e) Valency of Oxygen
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33. Discovery Of Electron
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34. (a) Covalency of Hydrogen
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35. Rules for writing of distribution of electrons in various shells for the first 18 elements
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36. Atomic Number
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37. (f) Valency of Nitrogen
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38. Charged Particles in Matter
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39. (c) Valency of Aluminium
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40. The Physical Properties of the Isotopes of an Element are Different
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41. Valaence Electrons (Or Valancy Electrons)
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42. Electronic Configurations of Noble Gases (or Inert Gases)
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43. Discovery of Proton
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44. Valaency Of Elements
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45. All the Isotopes of an Element Have Identical Chemical Properties
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46. Inertness of Noble Gases
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47. Relationship Between Mass Number and Atomic Number
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48. Relation Between Valency and Valence Electrons
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49. Electronic Configurations of Elements
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50. Isobars
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