Radiation consisting of helium nuclei that are discharged by radioactive disintegration of some heavy elements, including uranium-238, radium-226, and plutonium-239. Alpha, the first letter of the Greek alphabet, is written as .
A positively charged particle ejected spontaneously from the nuclei of some radioactive elements. It is identical to a helium nucleus that has a mass number of four and an electrostatic charge of +2. It has low-effect within a short time after exposure. Low penetrating power and short range. The most energetic alpha particle will generally fail to penetrate the skin. Alphas are hazardous when an alpha-emitting isotope is introduced into the body.
The most energetic but least penetrating form of radiation. It can be stopped by a sheet of paper and cannot penetrate human skin. However, if an alpha-emitting isotope is inhaled or ingested, it will cause highly concentrated local damage. Alpha-emitting radioactive material at the site originates from nuclear fuel cladding failure at the Haddam Neck plant.
Radiation with a long wavelength with little penetrating strength that can be stopped by paper, but can also be carried by air currents and cause cancer. An example is radon gas, which may be present in the mining area.