What is Radiation and its Types of Ratiation In Science?

What is Radiation?

In physics, radiation is the emission or transmission of energy in the form of waves or particles space through or through a medium of material.

series of radiation

Types of radiation

Electromagnetic waves, such as radio waves, microwaves, infrared, visible light, ultraviolet, x-rays, gamma rays (s),  Acoustic radiation, such as ultrasound, sound, and seismic waves (independent on a physical transmission medium).

It involves the emission of any part of the electromagnetic spectrum, plus it involves the release of particles.

For example, a burning candle emits rays in the form of heat and light.

The Sun emits rays in the form of particles, light, and heat.

Today, to benefit humans, radiation is used in medicine, academia, and the industry as well as for generating electricity.

In addition, rays have useful applications in areas such as agriculture, archaeology, space exploration, law enforcement, geology, and many others.

There are only three types of Rays Alpha, Beta, and Gamma.


These are fast-moving helium atoms. They have high energy, typically in the MeV range.

Due to their large mass, they are stopped by just a few inches of air or a piece of paper.

emission of alpha particle with helium


A beta particle is also called beta ray or beta radiation. Its symbol is β). these rays have high-energy, high-speed electron or positron.

It is emitted by the radioactive decay of an atomic nucleus during the process of the beta decay.

beta radiation emits due to antineutrinio

Gamma radiations

A gamma-ray is also called gamma radiation. Its symbol is γ.

These are highly penetrating electromagnetic rays arising from the radioactive decay of an atomic nucleus.

These electromagnetic waves consist of shortest wavelength. so it imparts the highest photon energy.

gamma radiation by emission of electron

Other types of Radiations

  • Radio Waves: Instant Communication. …
  • Microwaves: Data and Heat. …
  • Infrared Waves: Invisible Heat. …
  • Visible Light Rays. …
  • Ultraviolet Waves: Energetic Light. …
  • X-rays: Penetrating Radiation. …
  • Gamma Rays: Nuclear Energy.

In physics, radiation is the emission of energy in the form of waves or particles through space or a particular medium. This includes electromagnetic radiation, such as visible light, ultraviolet, microwaves, radio waves, infrared, x-rays, and gamma radiation (γ).

Ionization of radiation

Radiation is often categorized on the bases of ionization.

There are two types of waves, ionizing or non-ionizing waves. Both are depending on the energy of the radiated particles.

Ionizing radiation carries more than 10 eV, which is enough to ionizing atoms and molecules, and break chemical bonds.

This is an important difference due to the large difference in harmfulness to living organisms.

A Common source of ionizing Radiation is radioactive materials that emit alpha, beta and gamma radiation.

These radiations consisting of helium nuclei, electrons or positrons, and photons.

X-rays, Gamma rays, and the higher energy range of ultraviolet light constitute the ionizing part of the electromagnetic spectrum.

The word “ionize” refers to the breaking of one or more electrons away from an atom, an action that requires the relatively high energies that this electromagnetic waves supply.

Further down the spectrum, the non-ionizing lower energies of the lower ultraviolet spectrum cannot ionize atoms.

But it can disrupt the inter-atomic bonds which form molecules, thereby breaking down molecules rather than atoms.

A good example of this is sunburn caused by long-wavelength solar ultraviolet.

The waves of longer wavelengths than UV in visible light, infrared and microwave frequencies cannot break bonds.

It can cause vibrations in the bonds which are Radio wavelengths and below generally are not regarded as harmful to biological systems.



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