<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >

UV radiation is used in the treatment of infantile jaundice and in some skin conditions. It is also used in sterilizing workspaces and tools, and killing germs in a wide range of applications. It is also used as an analytical tool to identify substances.

When exposed to ultraviolet, some substances, such as minerals, glow in characteristic visible wavelengths, a process called fluorescence. So-called black lights emit ultraviolet to cause posters and clothing to fluoresce in the visible. Ultraviolet is also used in special microscopes to detect details smaller than those observable with longer-wavelength visible-light microscopes.

Things great and small: a submicroscopic view of x-ray production

X-rays can be created in a high-voltage discharge. They are emitted in the material struck by electrons in the discharge current. There are two mechanisms by which the electrons create X-rays.

The first method is illustrated in [link] . An electron is accelerated in an evacuated tube by a high positive voltage. The electron strikes a metal plate (e.g., copper) and produces X-rays. Since this is a high-voltage discharge, the electron gains sufficient energy to ionize the atom.

An atom is shown. The nucleus is in the center as a cluster of small spheres packed together. Four electron orbits are shown around the nucleus. The one close to the nucleus is circular. All the other orbits are elliptical in nature and inclined at various angles. An electron, represented as a tiny sphere, is shown to strike the atom. An electron is shown knocked out from the closest orbit. A second image of the same atom illustrates another electron striking innermost orbit; a wavy red arrow representing an x ray is shooting away from the innermost orbit.
Artist’s conception of an electron ionizing an atom followed by the recapture of an electron and emission of an X-ray. An energetic electron strikes an atom and knocks an electron out of one of the orbits closest to the nucleus. Later, the atom captures another electron, and the energy released by its fall into a low orbit generates a high-energy EM wave called an X-ray.

In the case shown, an inner-shell electron (one in an orbit relatively close to and tightly bound to the nucleus) is ejected. A short time later, another electron is captured and falls into the orbit in a single great plunge. The energy released by this fall is given to an EM wave known as an X-ray. Since the orbits of the atom are unique to the type of atom, the energy of the X-ray is characteristic of the atom, hence the name characteristic X-ray.

The second method by which an energetic electron creates an X-ray when it strikes a material is illustrated in [link] . The electron interacts with charges in the material as it penetrates. These collisions transfer kinetic energy from the electron to the electrons and atoms in the material.

A picture showing an electron represented as a tiny sphere shown to strike the atoms in the material represented as spheres slightly larger in size than the electron. A ray of X ray is shown to come out from the material shown by a wavy arrow.
Artist’s conception of an electron being slowed by collisions in a material and emitting X-ray radiation. This energetic electron makes numerous collisions with electrons and atoms in a material it penetrates. An accelerated charge radiates EM waves, a second method by which X-rays are created.

A loss of kinetic energy implies an acceleration, in this case decreasing the electron’s velocity. Whenever a charge is accelerated, it radiates EM waves. Given the high energy of the electron, these EM waves can have high energy. We call them X-rays. Since the process is random, a broad spectrum of X-ray energy is emitted that is more characteristic of the electron energy than the type of material the electron encounters. Such EM radiation is called “bremsstrahlung” (German for “braking radiation”).

Questions & Answers

What is meant by dielectric charge?
It's Reply
what happens to the size of charge if the dielectric is changed?
Brhanu Reply
omega= omega not +alpha t derivation
Provakar Reply
u have to derivate it respected to time ...and as w is the angular velocity uu will relace it with "thita × time""
do to be peaceful with any body
Brhanu Reply
the angle subtended at the center of sphere of radius r in steradian is equal to 4 pi how?
Saeed Reply
if for diatonic gas Cv =5R/2 then gamma is equal to 7/5 how?
define variable velocity
Ali Reply
displacement in easy way.
Mubashir Reply
binding energy per nucleon
Poonam Reply
why God created humanity
Manuel Reply
Because HE needs someone to dominate the earth (Gen. 1:26)
why god made humenity
Is the object in a conductor or an insulator? Justify your answer. whats the answer to this question? pls need help figure is given above
Jun Reply
ok we can say body is electrically neutral ...conductor this quality is given to most metalls who have free electron in orbital d ...but human doesn't have ...so we re made from insulator or dielectric material ... furthermore, the menirals in our body like k, Fe , cu , zn
when we face electric shock these elements work as a conductor that's why we got this shock
how do i calculate the pressure on the base of a deposit if the deposit is moving with a linear aceleration
ximena Reply
why electromagnetic induction is not used in room heater ?
Gopi Reply
What is position?
Amoah Reply
What is law of gravition
sushil Reply
what is magnetism
Sandeep Reply

Get the best College physics for ap... course in your pocket!

Source:  OpenStax, College physics for ap® courses. OpenStax CNX. Nov 04, 2016 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11844/1.14
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'College physics for ap® courses' conversation and receive update notifications?