7 thoughts on “Decay Chains

  1. HI MR. REID! :) Sidney, Rajee and I totally found your website! We caught you :D
    Extra credit for us? See you tomorrow in 5th period
    -Emily

  2. Mr. Reid,

    While surfing the web for inspiration on modeling consecutive (pseudo) first-order chemical reactions, I stumbled across your paper on decay chains. It was just what I was looking for. The spreadsheet you provided was very helpful in simulating up to five such chemical reactions and it could, of course, be modified to accommodate more.

    I found many other tidbits on your website to be very interesting and I especially love the photo of the Al vs Al confrontation (http://wordpress.mrreid.org/2013/01/28/whipple-shielding/).

    Thanks for the help and inspiration

    Best regards,
    – A Grateful Chemist

  3. Loved it. Greatest teacher ever 9apart from maybe my science teacher)
    Go your website!

  4. Hi Mr. Reid, I’ve coded an activity calculating program that also calculates the amounts/activity where the first isotope in the decay chain is created at a certain rate. It also includes branching factors from one isotope to another and you can set the starting number of atoms for any isotope in the decay chain. https://github.com/BenPalmer1983/activitylite

  5. Thanks for this great work. Enabled me to visualise decay chains a lot better!

  6. If you played russian roulette with a six bullet revolver with three bullets in alternate chambers the chance of dying should be 50% or prob 0.5. Right?
    But if you loaded the three bullets in adjacent chambers the prob of dying may well be slightly greater than 0.5 due to bias created by centrifugal force.
    By the by I just don’t get your 1 in 6, then 1 in 5, then 1 in 4, then 1 in 3, then 1 in 2, then 1 in 1 or certainty explanation of successive rounds of russian roulette.
    If an extra bullet is added each round, then the 2nd round prob becomes 2 in 6 or 0.333, the 3rd round prob becomes 3 in 6 or 0.5, the 4th round is 4 in 6 or 0.667, the 5th round 5 in 6 or 0.833.
    Certainty is of course guaranteed on the 6th round with a full chamber.
    Like your stuff Mr Reid.

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