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Physics Project (( Radioactive decay )) - Lab Report Example

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Physics Project (( Radioactive decay ))

We used excel tables, bar graphs and smooth line graphs to analyses the data obtained from the laboratory. We found out that during half life time interval the coins will decay to half its initial number just as it will occur with real nuclei decay. Also, that the decay process is an exponential function curve. To decay to zero, we need approximately three times the half-life of the coins. The throwing of the pennies proved to a good model for the nuclei decay process as shown by the normal distribution frequency curves
Radioactivity is the natural, spontaneous process in which a nucleus of an unstable atom loses energy by emitting particles such as gamma, beta or alpha particles. Past studies (Martin 2006. Pg 15) have shown that these radioactive nucleus though are randomly emitting particle, the time it takes for a particular radioactive element to reduce to half its original amount is always a constant. In this project, we set out to perform a radioactive decay process and find half-life by using the flipping of pennies. We set to investigate if half of the coins decays at each flip and also investigate the relationship between the accumulated coins decayed and the coins left curves. If we assume that the coins were being flipped at equal interval of time (half-life) we wanted also to investigate if the number of coins that decay each time is half the original number. With these objectives, we set the following hypothesis; that tossing a coin is a good model for radioactive half-life (Cook 2010, Pg. 46). Approximately 50% of the coins should decay at each throw and that it should take approximately three shakes to get to zero coins left. In the second set up hypothe\sis were that; four coins should decay most often on the first throw. Our prediction of the percentage decay first throws calculation is 50%. The distribution of the number of coins that decay on the first throw should be bell shaped (Cook 2010, Pg. ...Show more


Throwing of pennies is a probability process and we were to find out if it is a good model to represent the nuclei decay. We used a box with a lid and a…
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