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ERIC Number: EJ887951
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-May
Pages: 4
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
Radiological Dispersion Devices and Basic Radiation Science
Bevelacqua, Joseph John
Physics Teacher, v48 n5 p302-305 May 2010
Introductory physics courses present the basic concepts of radioactivity and an overview of nuclear physics that emphasizes the basic decay relationship and the various types of emitted radiation. Although this presentation provides insight into radiological science, it often fails to interest students to explore these concepts in a more rigorous manner. One reason for limited student interest is the failure to link the discussion to topics of current interest. The author has found that presenting this material with a link to radiological dispersion devices (RDDs), or dirty bombs, and their associated health effects provides added motivation for students. The events of Sept. 11, 2001, and periodic media focus on RDDs heighten student interest from both a scientific curiosity as well as a personal protection perspective. This article presents a framework for a more interesting discussion of the basics of radiation science and their associated health effects. The presentation can be integrated with existing radioactivity lectures or added as a supplementary or enrichment activity.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A