Quick Answer: What Is The Stability Of A Nucleus Dependent On?

What makes a nucleus stable?

An atom is stable if the forces among the particles that makeup the nucleus are balanced.

An atom is unstable (radioactive) if these forces are unbalanced; if the nucleus has an excess of internal energy.

Instability of an atom’s nucleus may result from an excess of either neutrons or protons..

Does an unstable nucleus release energy?

an unstable nucleus releases energy by emitting radiation during the process of radioactive decay.

What holds a nucleus together?

The strong nuclear force pulls together protons and neutrons in the nucleus. At very small distances only, such as those inside the nucleus, this strong force overcomes the electromagnetic force, and prevents the electrical repulsion of protons from blowing the nucleus apart.

What happens to an unstable nucleus?

An unstable nucleus can decay by emitting an alpha particle , a beta particle , a gamma ray or in some cases a single neutron.

Which is the most stable nucleus?

It is a stable isotope, with the highest binding energy per nucleon of any known nuclide (8.7945 MeV). It is often stated that 56Fe is the “most stable nucleus”, but only because 56Fe has the lowest mass per nucleon (not binding energy per nucleon) of all nuclides.

How do you know if a nucleus is stable?

The two main factors that determine nuclear stability are the neutron/proton ratio and the total number of nucleons in the nucleus. The principal factor for determining whether a nucleus is stable is the neutron to proton ratio.

What is the most stable element?

noble gasesThe noble gases are the chemical elements in group 18 of the periodic table. They are the most stable due to having the maximum number of valence electrons their outer shell can hold.

Why would a nucleus change?

Each element has isotopes with different numbers of neutrons. The stability of a nucleus depends on the right balance of protons and neutrons. If there are too few or too many neutrons, the nucleus may become unstable. When this happens, particles are produced from the nucleus of the atom.

How do you know if an isotope is radioactive?

Key ConceptsAn unstable isotope emits some kind of radiation, that is it is radioactive.A stable isotope is one that does not emit radiation, or, if it does its half-life is too long to have been measured.It is believed that the stability of the nucleus of an isotope is determined by the ratio of neutrons to protons.More items…

Is hydrogen stable or unstable?

Hydrogen only has one electron in its lowest energy level. This is a very unstable arrangement, and hydrogen gas undergoes a variety of reactions so as to reach a stable electron configuration where its energy level is either empty of electrons, or filled with electrons.

What are the three types of nuclear change?

Nuclear ReactionsFission.Fusion.Nuclear Decay.Transmutation.

What is the difference between a stable and unstable isotope?

The nucleus of each atom contains protons and neutrons. Stable isotopes do not decay into other elements. … In contrast, radioactive isotopes (e.g., 14C) are unstable and will decay into other elements.

Why are isotopes unstable?

Explanation: Usually, what makes an isotope unstable is the large nucleus. If a nucleus becomes larger enough from the number of neutrons, since the neutron count is what makes isotopes, it will be unstable and will try to ‘shed’ its neutrons and/or protons in order to achieve stability.

What are the general rules for predicting nuclear stability?

The ratio of neutrons to protons (n/p) is a successful way in predicting nuclear stability. This ratio is close to 1 for atoms of elements with low atomic numbers (of less than about 20 protons). The n/p ratio steadily increases as the atomic number increases past element 20 (calcium) to about element 84 (polonium).

How does the stability of a nucleus change during a nuclear reaction?

In nuclear decay reactions (or radioactive decay), the parent nucleus is converted to a more stable daughter nucleus. Nuclei with too many neutrons decay by converting a neutron to a proton, whereas nuclei with too few neutrons decay by converting a proton to a neutron.

Why is iron nucleus the most stable?

This stability is caused by the attractive nuclear force between nucleons. Iron 56 is the most stable nucleus. It is most efficiently bound and has the lowest average mass per nucleon. … It takes more energy per nucleon to take one of these nuclei completely apart than it takes for any other nucleus.

Is a nucleus stable?

Subatomic particles of the nucleus (protons and neutrons) are called nucleons. … Stable nuclei generally have even numbers of both protons and neutrons and a neutron-to-proton ratio of at least 1. Nuclei that contain magic numbers of protons and neutrons are often especially stable.