Choose all of the processes below that would result in the transmutation of an element.a. melting b. fusion c. beta decay d. sublimation e. fission f. alpha decay

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thilina-g eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Transmutation of an element is the conversion of one chemical element or isotope into another. During transmutation atoms of one element is transformed to atoms of another element or isotope. Transmutation is occurred either via nuclear reactions or radioactive decay.

a. Melting

Melting is the process of transforming a solid into a liquid. The nuclear arrangement of an element is not affected by this. Therefore transmutation doesn't occur.

b. Fusion

Nuclear fusion is the process in which the two atomic nuclei join together or as the word suggests they are 'fused' together into heavier elements. Therefore transmutation is happened in fusion.

c. Beta decay

In beta decay, an element is converted into its next highest element. That means atomic number increases via a neutron decays into a proton and an electron. Transmutation occurs in beta decay.

d. Sublimation

Sublimation is the process in which a solid is transformed into gaseous state (vapor) without going through the liquid phase. One such example is the sublimation of Iodine. Like in melting, the nuclei of atoms are not affected. Therefore transmutation cannot occur.

e. Fission

Nuclear fission is the nuclear reaction or radioactive decay which makes the atoms split into smaller parts. Transmutation occurs during fission.

f. Alpha decay

Alpha decay is the radioactive decay in which an atom decays while emitting an alpha particle or sometimes called as a helium nucleus. The element is converted into a lower element.

Therefore transmutation occurs in b, c, e and f.