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Rutherford's Gold Leaf exp.

  1. Oct 22, 2004 #1
    anyone familiar with this? Rutherford (Ernest) had a famous experiment with the gold leaf and some radiactive source. Anyone wanna calloborate? Becuz i m not so clear on wat that is
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 22, 2004 #2


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    You might try an atomic or nuclear physics book. Simply stated, by bombarding the foil with alpha particles, Rutherford demonstrated that nucleii are very small, and that atoms are mostly space. The so called plum pudding model was disproved.

    Bohr, who worked with Rutherford, saved the idea of a "planatary model" of the atom, with the astonishing idea of quantum stability, and derived the formulas of the hydrogen spectra to substantial accuracy. Rutherford discovered the nucleus, Thompson discovered the electron, and Bohr gave the first successful theory of the atom based on electrons and nucleii.

    Reilly Atkinson
  4. Oct 23, 2004 #3
    thanks, do u know how the alpha particles and the goldfoil work?
  5. Oct 27, 2004 #4

    James R

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    The gold foil lets most alpha particles through, because the gold atoms aren't too close together. But occasionally an alpha particle comes close enough to a gold nucleus to be scattered. Some of them are scattered through very large angles.

    Rutherford's famous statement was that the result of the experiment was like firing a cannon ball at a piece of tissue paper and having it come back and hit you.
  6. Oct 27, 2004 #5


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    Gold Leaf Electroscope

    It was one of the first and simplest instruments used to determine the rate of ionization of gases. Charge the leafs so they seperate by some angle. Then use a radioactive source to inonize the gas in the leafs container. The rate at which the leafs angle decreases is proportional to the rate of gas ionization.


  7. May 28, 2005 #6
    i want it more scientifically
  8. May 28, 2005 #7
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