Problem: Stable and radioactive isotopes as a function of numbers of neutrons and protons in a nucleus.The stable nuclei (dark blue dots) define a region known as the belt of stability.Estimate the optimal number of neutrons for a nucleus containing 70 protons.

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We are asked to determine the optimal number of neutrons for a nucleus containing 70 protons.

An element can be represented as:


You can determine the identity of the element using its atomic number:

Atomic number (Z): 

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Problem Details


A graph shows a plot of stable isotopes rising steadily within a band of stability. This band is above the linear increasing line representing a 1 to 1 proton to neutron ratio.


Stable and radioactive isotopes as a function of numbers of neutrons and protons in a nucleus.The stable nuclei (dark blue dots) define a region known as the belt of stability.


Estimate the optimal number of neutrons for a nucleus containing 70 protons.

Frequently Asked Questions

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 Band of Stability concept. You can view video lessons to learn Band of Stability. Or if you need more Band of Stability practice, you can also practice Band of Stability practice problems.

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