QuestionDescribe how alpha, beta and gamma radiation could be distinguished using a Wilson Cloud Chamber.Background TheoryIn 1912 Scottish physicist C. T. R. Wilson devised the cloud chamber to detect radiation. The general procedure was to allow for a liquid (e.g. ethanol) to evaporate in an enclosed container to the point of saturation and then lower the pressure, producing a super-saturated volume of air. Then the passage of a charged particle would condense the vapour into tiny droplets, producing a visible trail marking the particle's path.

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Asked Dec 20, 2019
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Describe how alpha, beta and gamma radiation could be distinguished using a Wilson Cloud Chamber.

Background Theory
In 1912 Scottish physicist C. T. R. Wilson devised the cloud chamber to detect radiation. The general procedure was to allow for a liquid (e.g. ethanol) to evaporate in an enclosed container to the point of saturation and then lower the pressure, producing a super-saturated volume of air. Then the passage of a charged particle would condense the vapour into tiny droplets, producing a visible trail marking the particle's path.

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Expert Answer

Step 1

Alpha particles are heavy, more ionising and short lived, and they produce short clear tracks in Wilson Cloud Chamber.

Step 2

Beta particles are light and less ionising than alpha particles; they produce long tracks in Wils...

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