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Rutherford's experiment

  1. Jul 15, 2013 #1
    everyone of us know that rutherford gave his own atomic model from the results of gold foil scattering experiment.
    my doubt is ,

    1.how was he able to see the alpha particles deflected ? (important doubt )
    2.does alpha-decay happened to emit alpha particles in the radium he took ?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 15, 2013 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    From the Wikipedia article about the experiment (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geiger%E2%80%93Marsden_experiment): [Broken]

    When an alpha particle hit the screen, it produced a small flash of light.

    Can you re-phrase your question? It's not clear to me what you're asking.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
  4. Jul 15, 2013 #3


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    Gold Member

  5. Jul 17, 2013 #4
    Thanks Alot :)

    sure .. rutherford used radium which emitted the alpha particles ( right ? ) . then , how does the alpha particles emitted ? does they emitted by radioactivity ( alpha-decay) ?

    thanks in advance :)
  6. Jul 17, 2013 #5
  7. Jul 18, 2013 #6


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    Staff: Mentor

    I don't know whether he used radium or something else. To find out, I'd have to do a Google search on something like "rutherford experiment alpha source" and hope that it leads me to a detailed description of Rutherford's apparatus beyond what's in Wikipedia. But you can just as well do that search yourself. :wink:

    It might depend on what the source material actually was (radium or something else). However, the only processes I know that emit alpha particles are alpha decay and some nuclear fission reactions. I doubt Rutherford used a fission reaction.
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