Radioisotopes in carbon dating

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The concept of stability is not exact, since there are almost stable isotopes.That is, for some time they are unstable and become stable or turn into other stable isotopes.These are radioactive isotopes, since they have an unstable atomic nucleus (due to the balance between neutrons and protons) and emit energy and particles when it changes to a more stable form.

Types of isotopes: Isotopes are also subdivided into stable isotopes (there are less than 300) and unstable or radioactive isotopes (there are around 1,200).Join Britannica's Publishing Partner Program and our community of experts to gain a global audience for your work!Radioactive isotope, also called radioisotope, radionuclide, or radioactive nuclide, any of several species of the same chemical element with different masses whose nuclei are unstable and dissipate excess energy by spontaneously emitting radiation in the form of alpha, beta, and gamma rays.Other radioactive isotopes are produced by humans via nuclear reactions, which result in unstable combinations of neutrons and protons.One way of artificially inducing nuclear transmutation is by bombarding stable isotopes with alpha particles.

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