- The isotopes which are unstable due to the presence of extra neutron in their nuclei and emit various types of radiations are called radioactive isotopes.
- The high energy radiations emitted by radioactive isotopes are harmful to human beings.
- Application of Radioactive Isotopes
- Production of Energy: Radioactive isotopes are used as a fuel in nuclear reactors of nuclear power plants for generating electricity.
Uranium-235 isotope is used as a fuel in the reactors of nuclear power plants for generating electricity.
- Treatment of Diseases: Radioactive isotopes Arsenic-74 are used as ‘tracers’ in medicine do detect the presence of tumors and blood clots, etc., in the human body.
- Treatment of Cancer: Radioactive isotopes Cobalt-60 are used in the treatment of cancer.
- Isotopes of Iodine-131 are used to determine the activity of thyroid gland which helps in the treatment of diseases like goitre.
- Radioactive isotopes are used in industry to detect the leakage in underground oil pipelines, gas pipelines and water pipes.