alpha radiation

Cultural Dictionary
alpha radiation [(al-fuh)]

Particles sent out by some radioactive nuclei, each particle consisting of two protons and two neutrons bound together. Alpha particles carry a positive charge. (See beta radiation and gamma radiation.)

Note: Alpha radiation, unlike gamma radiation, has low penetrating power; it can be stopped by clothing.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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