ionizing radiation

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ionizing radiation

[′ī·ə‚niz·iŋ ‚rād·ē′ā·shən]
Particles or photons that have sufficient energy to produce ionization directly in their passage through a substance. Also known as ionization radiation.
Particles that are capable of nuclear interactions in which sufficient energy is released to produce ionization.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Ionizing Radiation


any radiation whose interaction with a medium ultimately leads to the ionization of atoms and molecules of the medium. Types of ionizing radiation include electromagnetic radiation, X rays, gamma radiation, and laser radiation, as well as fluxes of a-particles, electrons, positrons, protons, neutrons, and other neutral and charged particles. Charged particles ionize the atoms of the medium directly upon collision if their kinetic energy is sufficient for ionization. When neutral particles (neutrons) or photons (quanta of X rays or y-radiation) pass through the medium, ionization is brought about by the secondary charged particles that form from the interaction of the primary particles with the medium.

Ionizing radiation plays an important role in various physical and chemical processes and in biology, medicine, agriculture, and industry. Many chemical reactions take place more readily or at considerably lower temperatures and pressures under the influence of ionizing radiation. Ionizing radiation is used in sterilization, pasteurization, and preservation of foods and pharmaceuticals. It produces various mutations in microorganisms and plants.

At the same time, ionizing radiation exerts a destructive ac-tion on matter. [10–1103-2; updated]

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

ionizing radiation

When electromagnetic radiation is ionizing, it breaks the atomic bond and creates ions, which are atoms and molecules with fewer electrons or a greater number of electrons than they normally have. Examples are gamma rays, x-rays, CAT scans and ultraviolet light.

In contrast, non-ionizing radiation does not have enough energy to alter the electron structure; however, it may be harmful depending on the amount of exposure. See ion and electromagnetic hypersensitivity.
Copyright © 1981-2019 by The Computer Language Company Inc. All Rights reserved. THIS DEFINITION IS FOR PERSONAL USE ONLY. All other reproduction is strictly prohibited without permission from the publisher.
References in periodicals archive ?
Other types of advanced medical imaging are radiography, angiography/fluoroscopy and nuclear medicine, all of which involve ionizing radiation, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), which does not.
The population was divided into 2 groups according to the presence or absence of occupational exposure to ionizing radiation.
There are no reports on the awareness and knowledge of the risks associated with ionizing radiation for radiological procedures in Bahrain, as well as comparisons between prescribed and self-presenting patients.
In all, six studies published between 1991 and 2012 met the inclusion criteria, and all six showed a statistically significant relative risk or odds of BCC with ionizing radiation exposure, the investigators reported.
The ionizing variety may be undesirable because it can cause DNA damage and mutations, thus we should all limit our exposure to its sources--radioactive materials and solar radiation among them.
Modulation of inflammatory immune reactions by low-dose ionizing radiation: molecular mechanisms and clinical application.
Additional samples were tested with higher concentrations of vitamin C prior to receiving diagnostic doses of ionizing radiation.
Experiments with appropriate shielding in brine shrimp, (6) protozoa, (7,8) and mice and rats (9) have produced convincing evidence that ionizing radiation is essential for life.
Since the test uses sound waves, no ionizing or potentially damaging radiation is absorbed by the body.
This update to the National Council on Radiation Protection & Measurements (NCRP) report on ionizing radiation risks for the thyroid gland provides scientists and health care researchers with new radiation dosimetry findings discovered in the last two decades.
"We're really trying to urge doctors that when they see a patient and have a clinical question, to think whether or not that clinical question can be answered without the use of ionizing radiation," Gerber said.
The Food and Drug Administration announced a final rule amending the food additive regulations to provide for the safe use of ionizing radiation for the control of foodborne pathogens and extension of shelf-life in fresh iceberg lettuce and fresh spinach.