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AQA GCSE Additional Science

AQA GCSE Additional Science Radiation Questions Name: …………………………………………… Date:

Radiation Questions

Name: ……………………………………………

Date: ………………………………………………

I can:

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Evaluate the effect of occupation and/or location on the level of background radiation and radiation dose

     

Evaluate the possible hazards associated with the use of different types of nuclear radiation

     

Evaluate measures that can be taken to reduce exposure to nuclear radiations

     

Evaluate the appropriateness of radioactive sources for particular uses, including as tracers, in terms of the type(s) of radiation emitted and their half-lives

     

Explain how results from the Rutherford and Marsden scattering experiments led to the ‘plum pudding’ model being replaced by the nuclear model.

     

Compare the uses of nuclear fusion and nuclear fission

     

Q1.

Four different processes are described in List A. The names of these processes are given in List B.

Draw a line to link each description in List A to its correct name in List B. Draw only four lines.

List A

the nucleus of an atom splitting into several pieces

List B

ionisation

gamma emission

the nuclei of two atoms joining together

nuclear fission

an atom losing an electron

an electric charge moving through a metal

nuclear fusion

electric current

(Total 4 marks)

Q2.

In the early part of the 20th century, scientists used the ‘plum pudding’ model to explain the structure of the atom.

pudding’ model to explain the structure of the atom. Following work by Rutherford and Marsden, a

Following work by Rutherford and Marsden, a new model of the atom, called the ‘nuclear’ model, was suggested.

of the atom, called the ‘nuclear’ model, was suggested. (a) Describe the differences between the two

(a)

Describe the differences between the two models of the atom.

 
 

(4)

(b)

In their investigation, Rutherford and Marsden fired positively charged alpha particles at a very thin sheet of gold. Over a period of several months, the scientists made over 100 000 measurements. These measurements showed that:

a very small number of alpha particles were deflected backwards from the gold foil.

Use the nuclear model to explain this experimental result.

 
 

(2)

(c)

Why did the work of Rutherford and Marsden convince many scientists that the ‘plum pudding’ model of the atom was incorrect?

 

(2)

(Total 8 marks)

Q3.

The diagram shows a helium atom.

 
 
   
 
 

(a)

(i)

Use the words in the box to label the diagram.

 
 

electron

neutron

proton

 
 

(2)

 

(ii)

An alpha particle is the same as the nucleus of a helium atom.

How is an alpha particle different from a helium atom?

 

(1)

(b) The graph shows how the count rate from a sample of radioactive sodium-24 changes with time.

from a sample of radioactive sodium-24 changes with time.   (i) How many hours does it
 

(i)

How many hours does it take for the count rate to fall from 100 counts per second to 50 counts per second?

 
 

Time =

hours

 

(1)

 

(ii)

What is the half-life of sodium-24?

 
 

Half-life =

hours

 

(1)

(c)

A smoke detector contains a small amount of americium-241.

 

Americium-241 is a radioactive substance which emits alpha particles. It has a half-life of 432 years.

 

(i)

Which one of the following statements gives a reason why the americium-241 inside the smoke detector will not need replacing?

 

Put a tick (

  Put a tick ( ) in the box next to your answer.

) in the box next to your answer.

The alpha particles have a low energy.

The alpha particles have a low energy.

People replace smoke detectors every few years.

People replace smoke detectors every few years.

Americium-241 has a long half-life.

Americium-241 has a long half-life. (1)

(1)

(ii) The diagram shows the label on the back of the smoke detector.

diagram shows the label on the back of the smoke detector. Why do people need to

Why do people need to know that the smoke detector contains a radioactive material?

Q4.

(1)

(Total 7 marks)

Four different processes are described in List A. The names of these processes are given in List B.

Draw a line to link each description in List A to its correct name in List B. Draw only four lines.

Draw a line to link each description in List A to its correct name in List

(Total 4 marks)

Q5.

The pie chart shows the average proportions of natural background radiation from various sources in one part of the UK.

(a)

radiation from various sources in one part of the UK. (a) (i) What proportion of the

(i)

What proportion of the background radiation comes from radon gas?

 

(1)

(ii)

Suggest why our bodies are slightly radioactive.

 

(1)

(b) The level of background radiation from cosmic rays is not the same everywhere. For every 30 metres above sea level, the amount of background radiation increases by one unit.

The diagram shows the position of two villages, A and B, built on a hill.

background radiation increases by one unit. The diagram shows the position of two villages, A and

How is the amount of background radiation from cosmic rays different in village A compared to village B?

To obtain full marks you must include a calculation in your answer.

 

(3)

(Total 5 marks)

Q6.

(a)

Complete the following table for an atom of uranium-238 (

Q6. (a) Complete the following table for an atom of uranium-238 ( U)

U)

 

mass number

238

 

number of protons

92

number of neutrons

 
 

(1)

(b)

Complete the following sentence.

 

The name given to the number of protons in an atom is the proton number or the

 
 

(1)

 

(c)

An atom of uranium-238 (

An atom of uranium-238 (

U) decays to form an atom of thorium-234 (

  (c) An atom of uranium-238 ( U) decays to form an atom of thorium-234 (

Th).

 

(i)

What type of radiation, alpha, beta or gamma, is emitted by uranium-238?

 
 

(1)

 

(ii)

Why does an atom that decays by emitting alpha or beta radiation become an atom of a different element?

 

(1)

(Total 4 marks)

Q7.

(a)

Complete the sentences about atoms.

 

In an atom, the number of electrons is equal to the number of

All atoms of an element have the same number of

Isotopes of the same element have different numbers of

 

(3)

 

(b)

Complete the sentence.

 
 

When an atom of a radioactive element emits alpha radiation, an atom of a different element is formed. A different element is formed because the radioactive element has lost

 

(1)

(Total 4 marks)

Q8.

The graph shows how the amount of radiation emitted by a sample of the radionuclide uranium 238 (U 238 ) changes as time passes.

uranium 238 (U 2 3 8 ) changes as time passes. (a) What is the half-life

(a)

What is the half-life of uranium 238 (U 238 )? (You should show how you obtained your answer. You may do this on the graph if you wish.)

 
 

Answer

 

(3)

(b)

What fraction (or percentage) of the uranium 238 (U 238 ) atoms will have decayed after 9 billion years?

 

(1)

(c)

Uranium 238 (U 238 ) decays through a long series of intermediate radionuclides to stable atoms of the isotope lead 206 (Pb).

A sample of igneous rock contains 3 atoms of uranium 238 (U 238 ) for every atom of lead 206 (Pb 206 ).

(i)

The intermediate radionuclides are not important when estimating the age of the rock. Explain why.

 

(1)

Q9.

(ii) Estimate the age of the rock. (You should explain how you obtained your answer.)

Answer

billion years

When an atom of thorium-232 decays, an alpha (α) particle is emitted from the nucleus. An atom of radium is left behind.

(a)

(3)

(Total 8 marks)

An alpha particle consists of two protons and two neutrons.

We can represent this radioactive decay in a special kind of equation:

this radioactive decay in a special kind of equation: Thorium-228 is also radioactive. Atoms of this

Thorium-228 is also radioactive.

Atoms of this isotope also decay by emitting an alpha particle and producing an isotope of radium.

Complete the equation for this decay.

an isotope of radium. Complete the equation for this decay. (4) (b) An atom of radium-228

(4)

(b) An atom of radium-228 decays by emitting a beta (β) particle from the nucleus.

A beta particle is in fact an electron (symbol

).
).

The effect of this is to change a neutron into a proton.

An atom of actinium remains.

This type of decay can also be represented by an equation:

of actinium remains. This type of decay can also be represented by an equation: This isotope

This isotope of actinium is radioactive.

An atom of actinium-228 also decays by emitting a beta particle.

An isotope of thorium is left behind.

Complete the equation for this decay.

is left behind. Complete the equation for this decay. (4) (c) Thorium-232 eventually decays to the
(4) (c) Thorium-232 eventually decays to the stable isotope lead-208. All the steps in this
(4)
(c)
Thorium-232 eventually decays to the stable isotope lead-208.
All the steps in this process can be shown on a diagram.
(i)
Complete the sentences:
During the decay from (A) to (B) a
particle is emitted.
During the decay from (B) to (C) a
particle is emitted.
During the decay from (E) to (F) a
particle is emitted.
During the decay from (I) to (J) a
particle is emitted.
(2)

(ii)

The table shows how long it takes for half of the atoms of each isotope to decay.

it takes for half of the atoms of each isotope to decay. A rock sample contains:

A rock sample contains:

• many atoms of thorium-232

• even more atoms of lead-208

• hardly any atoms of any of the other isotopes shown on the diagram

Explain this as fully as you can.

(3)

(Total 13 marks)

Q10.

(a)

When an atom of thorium-232 decays, an alpha (α) particle is emitted from the

nucleus. An atom of radium is left behind.

An alpha particle consists of two protons and two neutrons.

We can represent this radioactive decay in a special kind of equation:

this radioactive decay in a special kind of equation: Thorium-228 is also radioactive. Atoms of this

Thorium-228 is also radioactive.

Atoms of this isotope also decay by emitting an alpha particle and producing an isotope of radium.

Complete the equation for this decay.

an isotope of radium. Complete the equation for this decay.   (4) (b) An atom of
 

(4)

(b)

An atom of radium-228 decays by emitting a beta (β) particle from the nucleus.

A beta particle is in fact an electron (symbol

A beta particle is in fact an electron (symbol ).

).

The effect of this is to change a neutron into a proton.

 

An atom of actinium remains.

This type of decay can also be represented by an equation:

 
of decay can also be represented by an equation:   This isotope of actinium is radioactive.

This isotope of actinium is radioactive.

An atom of actinium-228 also decays by emitting a beta particle.

 

An isotope of thorium is left behind.

Complete the equation for this decay.

emitting a beta particle.   An isotope of thorium is left behind. Complete the equation for
 

(4)

(c)

Thorium-232 eventually decays to the stable isotope lead-208.

All the steps in this process can be shown on a diagram.

All the steps in this process can be shown on a diagram. (i) Complete the sentences:

(i) Complete the sentences:

During the decay from (A) to (B) a

During the decay from (B) to (C) a

During the decay from (E) to (F) a

During the decay from (I) to (J) a

particle is emitted.

particle is emitted.

particle is emitted.

particle is emitted.

(2)

(ii)

The table shows how long it takes for half of the atoms of each isotope to decay.

it takes for half of the atoms of each isotope to decay. A rock sample contains:

A rock sample contains:

• many atoms of thorium-232

• even more atoms of lead-208

• hardly any atoms of any of the other isotopes shown on the diagram

Explain this as fully as you can.

(3)

(Total 13 marks)

Q11.

Neptunium-237 ( 237 Np) is a radioactive element. The graph shows the numbers of neutrons and protons in the nuclei of the elements formed when 237 Np decays.

nuclei of the elements formed when 2 3 7 Np decays. (a) Use the periodic table

(a)

Use the periodic table on the Data Sheet to identify element X.

 

(1)

(b)

Why are 233 Pa and 233 U considered to be different elements?

 

(1)

(c)

What type of radiation is released when 237 Np decays to form 233 Pa?

 

(1)

(d)

What change takes place in the nucleus when 233 Pa changes into 233 U?

 

(1)

(Total 4 marks)

Q12.

The diagram shows how the thickness of aluminium foil is controlled. The thicker the aluminium foil, the more radiation it absorbs.

thicker the aluminium foil, the more radiation it absorbs. (a) The designers used a beta radiation

(a)

The designers used a beta radiation source for this control system.

 

(i)

Why would an alpha radiation source be unsuitable in this control system?

 

(1)

 

(ii)

Why would a gamma radiation source be unsuitable in this control system?

 

(1)

(b)

The substance used in the beta radiation source is radioactive.

(i)

Why are some atoms radioactive?

 

(1)

 

(ii)

Explain why radiation is dangerous to humans.

 

(2)

(Total 5 marks)

M1.

M1. M2. (a) any two pairs from: [4] • nuclear model mass is concentrated at the

M2.

(a)

any two pairs from:

[4]

• nuclear model mass is concentrated at the centre / nucleus (1)

plum pudding model mass is evenly distributed (1) accept the nuclear model has a nucleus/the plum pudding model does not have a nucleus for 1 mark

• nuclear model positive charge occupies only a small part of the atom (1)

plum pudding model positive charge spread throughout the atom (1) accept electrons in shells/ orbits provided a valid comparison is made with the plum pudding model do not accept on its own do not accept electrons at edge of plum pudding

• nuclear model electrons orbit some distance from the centre / nucleus (1)

plum pudding electrons embedded in the (mass) of positive (charge) (1)

• nuclear model the atom mainly empty space (1)

plum pudding model is a ‘solid’ mass (1) to gain credit it must be clear which model is being described do not accept simple descriptions on the diagram without comparison

 

4

(b)

nucleus must be positive to deflect/ repel alpha particles answers in terms of electrons/negative charge causing deflection negates mark answers in terms of reflection negates mark

 

1

 

nucleus (very) small so few alpha particles deflected backwards accept most of atom empty space so most pass through

 

1

(c)

many/ 100 000 measurements taken accept results for measurements accept data valid / reliable

 

1

 

findings could not be explained by plum pudding model accept a specific finding that could not be explained eg some alpha particles were deflected backwards

 

1

 

[8]

M3.

(a)

(i)

 
 
 

all 3 labels correct allow 1 mark for 1 correct label

 

2

 

(ii)

has no electrons it = alpha allow alpha has a positive(charge) allow a helium (atom) has no (charge) do not accept general properties of alpha do not accept general answers in terms of size / density / mass etc

 

1

 

(b)

(i)

15 (hours) accept any answer between 14.8 and 15.2 inclusive

 

1

 

(ii)

15 (hours) or their (b) (i)

 

1

 

(c)

(i)

americium-241 has a long half life

 

1

(ii) any one from:

• alpha (particles) are harmful to … accept radiation / radioactive material is harmful to … accept specific example of harm eg can cause cancer accept radiation is poisonous if ingested / inhaled do not accept it is poisonous / in case of leakage

• so they dispose of it safely / appropriately

• so they don’t break it open / open it accept do not touch the radioactive source

• so they can make a choice about having a radioactive source (in the house) it = radioactive material

1

[7] M4. four lines correct allow 1 mark for each correct line if more than
[7]
M4.
four lines correct
allow 1 mark for each correct line
if more than 1 line is drawn from a box in List A, mark each line
incorrect
[4]

M5.

(a)

(i)

half / ½ / 50% accept 1 (part) in 2 (parts) 1

 

1

 

(ii)

(the) food (we eat) is radioactive accept because of the food (we eat) accept we breathe in radon radon in the air is neutral

 

1

 

(b)

higher in village B

 

1

 

by 6 units

 
 

allow 1 mark for correctly obtaining a height difference of 180(m)/ 4 times higher – this refers to height and not radiation levels accept for 3 marks in village A it is 2 units (extra) and in village be it is 8 units (extra) allow 1 mark for a correct radiation calculation based on incorrect height readings

 

2

 

[5]

M6.

(a)

146

 

1

 

(b)

atomic number

 
 

1

 

(c)

(i)

alpha

 

1

 

(ii)

number of protons changes accept atomic number changes accept loses or gains protons do not accept protons with any other particle e.g. number of protons and neutrons changes incorrect do not accept any reference to mass number

 

1

 

[4]

M7.

(a)

protons

 

1

 

protons

 
 

accept electrons

 

1

 

neutrons

 
 

1

 

(b)

protons

 
 

reject mass

 

1

 

[4]

M8.

indication (in writing or on graph) of finding point where radiation is halved (e.g. to 24 [from an initial 48]) and relating to the time difference between the two points gains 1 mark

(a)

 

but

4.2-4.8*

 

(*i.e. in this range, including extremes) gains 2 marks

 

units billions of years for 1 mark

 

3

 

(b)

¾

or

75%

 

[allow ecf from (a)]

 

for 1 mark

 

1

(c)

(i)

idea that the intermediate nuclides are relatively short-lived for 1 mark

1 (ii) idea that ¼ has decayed or ¾ remains gains 1 mark but read
1
(ii)
idea that ¼ has decayed or ¾ remains
gains 1 mark
but
read graph for radiation level of 36 (stated or shown on graph itself)
gains 2 marks
but
1.6-1.8* (billion years)
(* i.e. in this range, including extremes)
gains 3 marks
3
[8]
##
(a)
[Accept He 2+ for α]
each
for 1 mark
4
(b)
[Accept β for e]
each
for 1 mark
4
 

(c)

(i)

beta/ β

alpha/ α

 

alpha/ α

beta/ β

beta/ β

but

alpha/ α

alpha/ α

beta/ β

[i.e. consistent for 1; consistent and correct for 2]

 

gains 2 marks

 
 

2

 

(ii)

ideas that

 

many thorium atoms because they take so long to decay*

 

(many lead atoms because) the thorium has been decaying for so long/for billions of years or (because) the rock is so/very/billions of years of years old

• many lead atoms because this is the stable end product [of the decay series]

• few atoms of other isotopes because they decay so quickly*

 

[*N.B. credit answers in terms of half-life] any three for 1 mark each

 

3

 

[13]

##

 

(a)

 
   
 

[Accept He 2+ for α]

 
 

each

  each for 1 mark

for 1 mark

 

4

 

(b)

 
   
 

[Accept β for e]

 
 

each

  each for 1 mark

for 1 mark

 

4

 

(c)

(i)

beta/ β

alpha/ α

 

alpha/ α

beta/ β

beta/ β

but

alpha/ α

alpha/ α

beta/ β

[i.e. consistent for 1; consistent and correct for 2]

 

gains 2 marks

 
 

2

 

(ii)

ideas that

 

many thorium atoms because they take so long to decay*

 

(many lead atoms because) the thorium has been decaying for so long/for billions of years or (because) the rock is so/very/billions of years of years old

• many lead atoms because this is the stable end product [of the decay series]

• few atoms of other isotopes because they decay so quickly*

 

[*N.B. credit answers in terms of half-life] any three for 1 mark each

 

3

 

[13]

M11.

(a)

radium accept Ra

 
 

1

 

(b)

different numbers of protons accept one has 91 protons, one has 92 or Pa has 91 protons, U has 92 do not credit they have different atomic numbers reject different numbers of protons and neutrons

 

1

 

(c)

alpha

 

1

 

(d)

neutron changes into proton accept electron lost / beta radiation accept singular or plural answers

 

1

 

[4]

M12.

(a)

(i)

cannot penetrate aluminium allow can only pass through air / paper too weak is neutral

 

1

 

(ii)

gamma rays not affected (by aluminium) allow all / most (gamma rays) to pass through too strong is neutral danger is neutral

 

1

 

(b)

(i)

(nuclei) unstable

 

1

 

(ii)

causes harm / damage to body / cells allow radiation sickness

 

1

 

detail e.g., causes mutations / causes cancer / damages DNA / damages chromosomes allow two effects for 2 marks

 

1

[5]