Asked in Nuclear Physics
Is the alpha particle weaker than beta and gamma?
August 08, 2009 5:42PM
Alpha particles (helium nuclei) are much larger and heavier than beta (electrons) and gamma (high-energy photons). This means they do far more damage to anything they hit.
However, it also means can't travel very far and can be stopped by as little as a sheet of paper.
Radioactive isotopes that emit only alpha radiation are not very dangerous, the only danger is breathing in or ingesting the isotope.