Radiation is the process of transmitting energy through space. Radiation can consist of both waves and/or particles. Though both, waves and particles, have similar characteristics, radiation is for the most part in one form or the other. Throughout this paper, the different types of radiation will be explained as well as their interactions with matter, except for one. The exposure, absorbed dose and dose equivalent of radiation along with the instruments used to detect radiation will be specified also. The last of the information dealing with radiation will deal with standard exposure to radiation and radiation's biological effects dealing with its factors.
The three main types of radiation include Alpha, Beta, and Gamma Radiation. Alpha Radiation is the most massive types of radiation. It is a particle ejected at a high speed from the nucleus of some, not all, radioactive atoms. An alpha particle is a combination of four particles, two protons and two neutrons, which have a charge of positive two. Due to their mass and electrical charge, alpha particles slow down extremely quick and do not penetrate very far. They can not penetrate the dead layer of skin that covers the body. Therefore, alpha radiation poses no real hazard when exposed outside the body. The next type of radiation is Beta Radiation. Beta Radiation is oddly identical to an electron except that it comes from the nucleus, not from the outer shells. Beta radiation has both electrons and positrons. The electrons, negative, come from isotopes that just have too many neutrons, while the positrons, positive, come from radioactive isotopes that have too many protons. Beta particles have a much lesser mass than alpha particles, which let beta particles penetrate much farther than alpha radiation. Energetic beta particles, unlike alpha, can penetrate the dead outer layer of skin and possibly damage living tissue.