decay chain


A sequence of radioactive decay processes, in which the decay of one element creates a new element that may itself be radioactive. The chain ends when stable atoms are formed. For example, uranium-238 decays into thorium-234, which in turn decays into palladium-234, and so on until stable iron is produced at the end of the chain. Also called decay sequence

QUIZZES

BEAT THE DOLDRUMS WITH THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ!

We know you’ll tackle this quiz totis viribus! See how many words from the week of Oct 12–18, 2020 you get right!
Question 1 of 7
What does “Indigenous” mean?
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.