• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Rutherford's Alpha Particle Scattering Experiment:The discovery of the Nucleus...

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Rutherford’s Alpha Particle Scattering Experiment:

The discovery of the Nucleus…

Rutherford was the world leader in alpha-particle physics. In 1906, at McGill, he had been the first to detect slight deflections of alphas on passage through matter. In 1907, he became a professor at the University of Manchester, where he worked with Hans Geiger. This was just a year after Rutherford's old boss, J. J. Thomson, had written a paper on his plum pudding atomic model suggesting that the number of electrons in an atom was about the same as the atomic number. (Not long before, people had speculated that atoms might contain thousands of electrons. They were assuming that the electrons contributed a good fraction of the atom's mass.)

Rutherford's alpha scattering

...read more.

Middle

        Most of the particles went straight through the foil without any deflection – however some of the particles (about 1 in 8000) were deflected by a degree of more than 90 degrees.

This meant that the idea of the “Plum pudding” model (suggested by J.J. Thompson in 1906) was in dispute – a model which Rutherford himself had been a believer in.

Rutherford pondered this problem for some months. He eventually decided there was simply no way it could generate the strength of electric field necessary to deflect the fast moving alphas.

The electric field from a sphere of charge reaches its maximum on the surface. Therefore, for a given charge, assumed spherically distributed, the only way to get a stronger field is to compress it into a smaller sphere.

...read more.

Conclusion

If an alpha goes through 400 layers of atoms, and in each layer it has a chance of one in ten thousand of getting close enough to the nucleus for a one-degree scatter, this is unlikely to happen twice. It follows that almost certainly only one scattering takes place. It then follows that all ninety or more degrees of scattering must be a single event, so the nucleus must be even smaller than one hundredth the radius of the atom - it must be less than 10-13 meters, as stated above.

image00.png

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Radioactivity section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a star student thought of this essay

4 star(s)

Response to the question

Response to the question is done well and outlines the experiment and explains how the different theorys came about from the way the experiment went. To improve the candidate should have included more information on the plum pudding model and ...

Read full review

Response to the question

Response to the question is done well and outlines the experiment and explains how the different theorys came about from the way the experiment went. To improve the candidate should have included more information on the plum pudding model and perhaps a diagram so they could explain better how the theory behind that was disproved.

Level of analysis

No clear introduction is used which would be good to introduce the topic and the concepts of the experiment. The candidate goes into the history behind the experiment well outlining other theories of the time, and how the setup of the experiment worked and the conclusions that could be drawn from it. The sections should be split up a little more clearly so we can follow the experiment a bit better, such as with spaced lining between paragraphs or sub-headings. The diagram included also helps define the experiment well.

Quality of writing

Good grammar, punctuation and spelling throughout. Sources are not stated which should be done so that the right essays can be given credit, as if not it is plagiarism. The candidate should have used even a base referencing manner.


Did you find this review helpful? Join our team of reviewers and help other students learn

Reviewed by skatealexia 31/07/2012

Read less
Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Radioactivity essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Factors Affecting Heat Loss.

    57 65 61 900 62 56 64 60 Observation While the experiment, was taking place, I saw that as soon as I placed the thermometer into the beaker, the temperature shot up immediately, and it gradually came down. Analysis Conclusion: I knew that the dark matt materials would lose the heat radiation very slowly and it would reflect the light.

  2. Peer reviewed

    As part of my AS physics coursework I went on a trip to Queen ...

    4 star(s)

    The Biparietal Diameter- is between two sides of the head and is usually measured in 13weeks. From 13 weeks it normally starts at 2.4cm and increases to about 9.5cm The Femur Length- measures the longest bone in the body and this reflects on the longitudinal growth of the fetus.

  1. Peer reviewed

    Ionisation smoke alarms use an ionisation chamber and a source of ionising radiation to ...

    3 star(s)

    Again beta radiation can be harmful if something with a beta substance in it is swallowed. However, as they can ionize and cause disruption to your cells, they have much less ionizing strength; therefore you could say that alpha particles are more dangerous.

  2. Brief History of the atom model.

    The alchemists were the first scientists to perform systematic experimentation. They recorded every experiment they performed, and shared their knowledge with other alchemists. This expanded the knowledge base of chemistry hundred fold. Such recording had never taken place. The knowledge of chemicals and their reactions if the original data that guides us today.

  1. The advantages and disadvantages of nuclear power and fossil fuels and which is the ...

    They both turn huge blades connected to a generator using steam. However, the way in which the steam is produced is very different from the process used in fossil fuel plants.

  2. The primary objective of this experiment is to familiarize with the use of an ...

    Rocking happens when the two atoms moved in the same direction, while scissoring happens when the two atoms rock, move towards and away from each other. Out-of-plane bending happens when the two atoms move out of the same plane as the third atom.

  1. The Factors which Affect Radiation in Small and Large Beakers.

    The reason for choosing this scale is because the time scale is practical to do and the scale is wide spread so lots of readings can be taken which will provide accurate and reliable results. I will carry out each experiment twice and average the results from both to gain more accurate results.

  2. The role of nuclear energy in the field of medicine

    the surgery, thyroid cancer and tumors that spread to the bones are also cured by using Nuclear energy. In other diagnostic use of nuclear energy, Nuclear energy is used to evaluate tumors, arthritis, fractures and infenction of bones. Locating the area where there is an infection, identifying problems causing gallbladder

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work