gamma ray

  1. a photon of penetrating electromagnetic radiation (gamma radiation ) emitted from an atomic nucleus.

  2. a photon emitted by an electron as a result of internal conversion.

  1. electromagnetic radiation with wavelengths shorter than approximately one tenth of a nanometer.

Origin of gamma ray

First recorded in 1900–05

Words Nearby gamma ray Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use gamma ray in a sentence

  • Well, maybe it was a gamma-ray burst, or maybe it was something else, cautioned some others.

    The Gamma-Ray Burst That Wasn’t | Matthew R. Francis | June 1, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
  • A source of neutrons to activate the material and a gamma-ray spectrometer to measure the radiation from the material afterwards.

    The Atomic Fingerprint | Bernard Keisch
  • Then you place each card, in turn, on a holder close to the gamma-ray detector for a period of 10 minutes.

    The Atomic Fingerprint | Bernard Keisch
  • Gamma-ray spectra are collected all day, first from a sample, then from its accompanying standard.

    The Atomic Fingerprint | Bernard Keisch
  • It has been shown that data collected by high-resolution gamma-ray spectrometers can be “fed” directly to a computer.

    The Atomic Fingerprint | Bernard Keisch
  • A typical gamma-ray spectrum looks like the one in the figure on the next page.

    The Atomic Fingerprint | Bernard Keisch

Scientific definitions for gamma ray

gamma ray

  1. A stream of high-energy electromagnetic radiation given off by an atomic nucleus undergoing radioactive decay. Because the wavelengths of gamma rays are shorter than those of x-rays, gamma rays have greater energy and penetrating power than x-rays. Gamma rays are emitted by pulsars, quasars, and radio galaxies but cannot penetrate the Earth's atmosphere. See more at radioactive decay.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.