Problem: Suppose a person ingests equal amounts of two nuclides, both of which are beta emitters (of roughly equal energy). Nuclide A has a half-life of 8.5 hours and Nuclide B has a half-life of 15.0 hours. Both nuclides are eliminated from the body within 24 hours of ingestion. Which of the two nuclides produces the greater radiation dose?

🤓 Based on our data, we think this question is relevant for Professor Tang's class at USF.

FREE Expert Solution

We’re being asked to determine the nuclide that produces the greater radiation given the half-life of Nuclide A and Nuclide B.


Recall that half-life is the time needed for the amount of a reactant to decrease by 50% or one-half. 


Radioactive/nuclear decay of isotopes follows first-order kineticsThe half-life of a first-order reaction is given by:


t1/2=ln 2k


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Problem Details

Suppose a person ingests equal amounts of two nuclides, both of which are beta emitters (of roughly equal energy). Nuclide A has a half-life of 8.5 hours and Nuclide B has a half-life of 15.0 hours. Both nuclides are eliminated from the body within 24 hours of ingestion. Which of the two nuclides produces the greater radiation dose?

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What scientific concept do you need to know in order to solve this problem?

Our tutors have indicated that to solve this problem you will need to apply the First Order Half Life concept. You can view video lessons to learn First Order Half Life. Or if you need more First Order Half Life practice, you can also practice First Order Half Life practice problems.

What professor is this problem relevant for?

Based on our data, we think this problem is relevant for Professor Tang's class at USF.