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1. Spontaneous disintegration of a radionuclide with the emission of energetic particles or radiation, such as alpha or beta particles or gamma rays.
2. An instance of such disintegration.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
(Nuclear Physics) disintegration of a nucleus that occurs spontaneously or as a result of electron capture. One or more different nuclei are formed and usually particles and gamma rays are emitted. Sometimes shortened to: decay Also called: disintegration
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
The spontaneous breakdown of a radioactive nucleus into a lighter nucleus. Radioactive decay causes the release of radiation in the form of alpha particles, beta particles, or gamma rays. The end result of radioactive decay is the creation of a stable atomic nucleus.
The American Heritage® Student Science Dictionary, Second Edition. Copyright © 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The decrease in the radiation intensity of any radioactive material with respect to time.
Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms. US Department of Defense 2005.
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|Noun||1.||radioactive decay - the spontaneous disintegration of a radioactive substance along with the emission of ionizing radiation|
alpha decay - radioactive decay of an atomic nucleus that is accompanied by the emission of an alpha particle
beta decay - radioactive decay of an atomic nucleus that is accompanied by the emission of a beta particle
nuclear reaction - (physics) a process that alters the energy or structure or composition of atomic nuclei
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