11 Trending Words of 2014
gamma ray n.
Electromagnetic radiation emitted from the nucleus of an atom by radioactive decay and having energies in a range from ten thousand (104) to ten million (107) electron volts.
|gamma ray |
A stream of high-energy electromagnetic radiation given off by an atomic nucleus undergoing radioactive decay. Because the wavelengths of gamma rays are shorter than those of x-rays, gamma rays have greater energy and penetrating power than x-rays. Gamma rays are emitted by pulsars, quasars, and radio galaxies but cannot penetrate the Earth's atmosphere. See more at radioactive decay.
The most energetic radiation in the electromagnetic spectrum; it has the lowest wavelength and the highest frequency in the spectrum. Gamma rays are sent out by some radioactive nuclei. Unlike alpha radiation and beta radiation, gamma rays are not made up of particles, and they have no charge.