Gamma radiation, rays and particles, as well as protection from them
Gamma radiation and its danger for living organisms
Wherever there is electric discharge, the radiation of one or another of the spectrum. Gamma radiation is one type of electromagnetic radiation, which has a very short wavelength and consists of a flow of gamma quanta (photons). It is established that it is not a separate type of radioactivity, and the support of decays alpha and beta radiation. Gamma radiation can also occur during a nuclear reaction when there is a deceleration of charged particles, their decay and other nuclear processes.
The concept of gamma-radiation
Radioactive radiation is ionizing radiation, which is born when an unstable behavior of the particle spectrum when they simply disintegrate into its component parts of the atom – protons, neutrons, electrons and photons. Gamma radiation, including x-ray, is the same process. Radiation has different biological effects on the human body – its harm depends on the ability of particles to penetrate various obstacles.
In this respect, gamma radiation has the most severe penetrating ability that allows it to penetrate even through a five-centimeter lead wall. Therefore, gamma radiation, or gamma rays is radiation with a high degree of radioactive impact on a living organism. At the time of emission their speed equal to the speed of light.
The frequency of gamma radiation is > 3·1018 , which is the most short wave and in the classification of electromagnetic waves is at the bottom, immediately before x-rays, whose radiation is slightly longer and is 1017 — 3·1018
Alpha-, beta — and gamma-rays are extremely dangerous to humans and their intense exposure leads to radiation sickness, which manifests the typical symptoms:
- acute leukocytosis;
- inhibition of heart rate, decreased muscle tone, slowing of all vital processes;
- hair loss;
- the successive failure of all organs – first the liver, kidneys, spinal cord, and then the heart.
Once in the body, the beams of radiation destroy and subjected to mutation of cells in such a way that, infected, infect those others. And those that managed to survive, reborn is already incapable of division and other functions of life. Alpha and beta rays are the most dangerous, but gamma particle insidious by the fact that for 1 second to overcome a distance of 300,000 kilometers and capable of hitting long distances. With a small dose of radiation a person does not feel its impact, and its destructive influence it detects immediately. It may take a few years and several generations, depending on the dose and type of rays before manifest violations. However, when a large dose of the disease is manifested within a few hours and has pronounced symptomatology, with abdominal pain, uncontrollable vomiting, headaches.
The danger of gamma radiation
Gamma rays can penetrate from outer space, sources of gamma radiation can also be a decay of some radioactive rocks – uranium, granite, radon and others.
The most famous case of poisoning by gamma rays is a case of poisoning Alexander Litvinenko, who spiked tea with polonium. Polonium is a radioactive element that is derived uranium, which has high radioactivity.
Quantum energy gamma radiation has tremendous power, which increases their permeability in living cells and the destructive effect. Causing death and cell transformation, gamma rays, over time, accumulate in organisms and damaged cells while simultaneously poisoning the body with toxins that appear in the process of decomposition.
Gamma-quantum is a nuclear radiation particle without mass and charge that is emitted during nuclear reactions when a nucleus goes from one energy state to another. When the quantum of gamma-learning passes through a substance and to join with him in the interaction, that there is a complete absorption of the energy of the gamma quantum of the substance with the release of its electron.
The danger of such exposure is most harmful to humans, as its penetrating power is almost no chance to 5-cm lead wall is able to absorb only half of the gamma radiation. In this respect, alpha — and beta-rays less dangerous – alpha radiation can delay normal sheet of paper, beta radiation can not overcome the wooden walls, and from gamma radiation, there is virtually no obstacles. Therefore, it is important to avoid prolonged exposure to these rays on the human body.
How to protect yourself from gamma radiation
Once in the body with increased gamma background radiation begins to quietly poison organism, and if there was no consumption of ultra-high doses in a short time, the first symptoms can manifest themselves soon. Primarily affect the hematopoietic system, which takes the first hit. It dramatically reduced the number of leukocytes, resulting very quickly affected and goes down the spinal cord. Together with the spinal cord suffer lymph nodes, which then also fail. The man loses his hair, his DNA is damaged. There comes a mutation of the genome, which leads to problems in heredity. When severe lesions of death from cancer or from failure of one or more organs.
It is necessary to measure the gamma background on the land before purchase. Under the influence of certain underground rocks, including underground rivers, tectonic processes in the earth’s crust it is possible contamination by gamma radiation of the earth’s surface.
Protection from gamma radiation can only be partial. If to prevent such a catastrophe, the next 300 years the affected area will be completely poisoned, up to a few tens of meters of the soil layer. Full protection does not exist, but you can use the cellars of houses, underground trenches and other shelters, though it should be remembered that this protection is functioning only partially.
Thus, the methods of protection from gamma radiation are mainly in the measurement of gamma background special equipment and not going to places with high levels of radiation like Chernobyl or the surrounding area of Fukushima.
The large spike in the water of nuclear radiation in the history of mankind occurred in 2011 at Fukushima, when the tsunami led to the failure of three nuclear reactors. Radioactive waste is washed into the sea in the amount of 300 tons daily for the seventh year. The dimensions of the disaster are terrifying. Since this leak is impossible to eliminate because of high temperature in the affected area, and who knows how many more will happen in this process. Meanwhile, the undercurrent of the radiation had spread over a considerable part of the Pacific ocean.
Applications of gamma radiation
If you deliberately apply a stream of gamma particles, it is possible to selectively destroy those cells of the body, which in this time are actively multiplying. The effect of the use of gamma rays used in medicine when dealing with cancer. As a last measure and only when other means fail, specifically at the malignant tumor of the used irradiation method. The most effective use of remote gamma-radiation therapy. This method is designed for the best process control with minimization of risks and damages healthy tissues.
Gamma rays are also used in other areas:
- Using these rays change the energy. For this device, which is used in experimental physics, is called a gamma spectrometer. It is magnetic, scintillation, semiconductor and crystal diffraction.
- The study of the spectrum of nuclear gamma radiation yields information on nuclear structure. The external environment, affecting the gamma radiation produces different effects, which are of great importance for understanding processes occurring at the same time. Therefore, all these processes are actively studied.
- The technique also uses gamma radiation to detect defects in metals. Since gamma radiation has a different level of absorption in a different environment, but at the same distance distribution, we can compute the defects with different intensity of radiation.
- Radiation chemistry also uses this radiation for initiating chemical reactions in various processes by using natural or artificial radioactive isotopes and electron accelerators – sources of this kind of radiation.
- Sterilization of food products by gamma radiation exploited by the food industry.
- The growing use of gamma rays to ensure that the plant acquired the best performance by mutation.
- Using gamma rays to grow and process some of the microorganisms that make medicines, including some antibiotics. They treated seeds, to get rid of small pests.
About 100 years ago, the properties of gamma radiation have not been studied sufficiently, and this led to a vulnerable use of radioactive elements as medical or measuring equipment. Gamma radiation also used for coatings with different jewelry and ceramics, in the manufacture of stained glass. So be careful in the storage and purchase of antiquities – a seemingly innocuous thing can pose a radioactive threat.