Isotopes exist because the atomic nuclei of many elements are stable or somewhat stable with different numbers of neutrons in them. Because the identity of an element is determined solely by its number of protons, and its chemical properties solely by its number of protons and electrons, different numbers of neutrons change neither the element nor its chemical properties. Nonetheless, many isotopes are radioactive and unstable, breaking down in time.Know More
Radioactive isotopes are the most famous, both for their inherent dangers and their use in nuclear power and nuclear weapons. These isotopes are unstable, which means that over time, any particular sample of such an isotope gradually transforms into one or two other elements. This can occur because the atom splits or because a neutron becomes a proton or a proton becomes a neutron. All these processes involve the release of energy or energetic particles, and thus are radioactive. Most radioactive isotopes are so unstable that they are not found in nature, as they decay too quickly.
According to resources on the University of Oregon website, before 1906, it was generally thought that the mass of an element was integral to its identity. However, in 1906 and 1907, several researchers proved that there were elements of different atomic mass but identical chemical properties. It was Frederick Soddy, in 1913, who first coined the term "isotopes."Learn more about Chemistry
Although stories of people who are half-human and half-fish exist in many cultures around the world, there is no existing proof that mermaids actually exist. The widespread popularity of the myth can be attributed to traders and explorers sharing stories when they encounter new cultures.Full Answer >
While many people claim ghosts are real, there is no hard evidence for their existence. There is, however, a large body of anecdotal evidence that describes encounters with ghosts and spirits.Full Answer >
Mermaids have existed in folklore since antiquity, but there has never been a verified sighting of a mermaid, nor has a purported mermaid body ever been verified as genuine. While it is impossible to prove that mermaids do not exist somewhere, there is no scientific evidence to support their existence.Full Answer >
Unfortunately, Santa Claus is a fictional character that has evolved based on an old Dutch folklore character named Sinterklaas. The mythical Santa Claus character, often called St. Nick, is said to live in the North Pole and ride around on a sleigh on Christmas Eve giving children presents.Full Answer >