Alpha Particle Mass

Alpha particle is alternatively known as Alpha radiation or Alpha ray. It is a positively charged particle emitted from the decay of various radioactive materials. Alpha particle mass is due to the two protons and two neutrons bonding. Thus, the Alpha ray nucleus is very similar to the Helium-4 nucleus. Represented by Greek alphabet α. In this article, let us know about alpha particle mass in detail along with examples.
Table of Contents:

Mass Of An Alpha Particle

An alpha particle can be called by interchangeable term doubly ionized helium nuclei(He2+). The mass of an alpha particle is-

Alpha particle mass is αm = 6.644657230(82) × 10-27 Kg

Terms within the parenthesis represent the error factor.

Alpha Particle

Alpha particles are generally produced during standard radioactive decay. These alpha rays have an average kinetic energy of 5MeV and velocity in the vicinity of 5% of that of c. They are also produced in high energy particle acceleratorsThey are highly ionized particles and have low penetration depth. Generally stopped by a few centimeters of air or by the skin.

Some properties of an Alpha particle along with corresponding values and units are listed in the table below.

Alpha Particle Value
Alpha Particle mass in Kg 6.644657230(82) × 10-27 Kg
Mass of alpha particle in amu 4.001506179127(63) u
Mass of alpha particle in eV 3.727379378(23) GeV/c2
Alpha particle mass number 4
Alpha particle charge Positive
Alpha particle symbol α, &alpha2+, He2+.
Mass of alpha particle compared to proton Mass of alpha particle = 4 × mass of a proton

Alpha Particle Example

In general, any alpha decay can be given in the form –

\(\begin{array}{l}_{Z}^{A}\textrm{X}\rightarrow _{Z-2}^{A-4}\textrm{X’}+_{2}^{4}\textrm{He}\end{array} \)

Alpha particle example can be given as-

\(\begin{array}{l}_{238}^{92}\textrm{U}\rightarrow _{90}^{234}\textrm{Th}+_{2}^{4}\textrm{He}\end{array} \)

Here,

\(\begin{array}{l}_{2}^{4}\textrm{He}\end{array} \)
is the Alpha particle.

Hope you have understood about an alpha particle, how it is generated, its physical properties like – alpha particle mass, mass of alpha particle in AMU, alpha particle charge, alpha particle symbol, alpha particle mass number, the mass of alpha particle compared to a proton. Along with the alpha particle example and general form.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

How are alpha particles represented?

Alpha particles are represented by Greek alphabet α.

What is an alpha particle?

An alpha particle is a positively charged particle emitted from the decay of various radioactive materials.

What is the mass of an alpha particle?

The mass of an alpha particle is αm = 6.644657230(82) × 10-27 Kg

State true or false: Alpha particle mass is due to the two protons and two neutrons bonding.

True.

State true or false: alpha particles are highly ionized particles with low penetration depth.

True.

Physics Related Topics:

Proton Mass
Neutron Mass
Compton Wavelength
Deuteron Mass

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