The Collaborative International Dictionary
Gamma ray \Gam"ma ray\ n. (Physics) A very penetrating electromagnetic ray not appreciably deflected by a magnetic or electric field, emitted by radioactive substances. Gamma rays are photons of electromagnetic radiation having a wavelength shorter than that of X-rays, (i. e. shorter than 0.1 nanometer) and are correspondingly more penetrating than X-rays. In addition to being given off in certain types of radioactive decay, they may be found in cosmic radiation, though they are largely absorbed by the earth's atmosphere. Gamma-ray detectors orbited above the atmosphere have found bursts of gamma radiation, in some cases associated with visually observed supernova explosions, but in most cases from unidentified sources.
alt. Very high frequency (and therefore very high energy) electromagnetic radiation emitted as a consequence of radioactivity. n. Very high frequency (and therefore very high energy) electromagnetic radiation emitted as a consequence of radioactivity.
n. electromagnetic radiation emitted during radioactive decay and having an extremely short wavelength [syn: gamma radiation]
Gamma Ray is a power metal band from Hamburg, northern Germany, founded and fronted by Kai Hansen after his departure from the German power metal band Helloween. Hansen is the current lead vocalist, guitarist as well as the chief songwriter of Gamma Ray. The band is known as one of the most prominent bands of the German heavy metal scene.
Gamma ray (also called gamma radiation), denoted by the lower-case Greek letter gamma (γ or γ ), is extremely high-frequency electromagnetic radiation and therefore consists of high-energy photons. Paul Villard, a French chemist and physicist, discovered gamma radiation in 1900 while studying radiation emitted by radium. In 1903, Ernest Rutherford named this radiation gamma rays. Rutherford had previously discovered two other types of radioactive decay, which he named alpha and beta rays.
Gamma rays are ionizing radiation, and are thus biologically hazardous. Decay of an atomic nucleus from a high energy state to a lower energy state, a process called gamma decay, produces gamma radiation. This is what Villard had observed.
Natural sources of gamma rays on Earth include gamma decay of radionuclides and secondary radiation from atmospheric interactions with cosmic ray particles. Rare terrestrial natural sources produce gamma rays that are not of a nuclear origin, such as lightning strikes and terrestrial gamma-ray flashes. Additionally, gamma rays are produced by a number of astronomical processes in which very high-energy electrons are produced, that in turn cause secondary gamma rays via bremsstrahlung, inverse Compton scattering, and synchrotron radiation. However, a large fraction of such astronomical gamma rays are screened by Earth's atmosphere and can only be detected by spacecraft. Gamma rays are produced by nuclear fusion in stars including the Sun (such as the CNO cycle), but are absorbed or inelastically scattered by the stellar material before escaping and are not observable from Earth.
Gamma rays typically have frequencies above 10 exahertz (or >10 Hz), and therefore have energies above 100 k eV and wavelengths less than 10 picometers (10 m), which is less than the diameter of an atom. However, this is not a strict definition, but rather only a rule-of-thumb description for natural processes. Electromagnetic radiation from radioactive decay of atomic nuclei is referred to as "gamma rays" no matter its energy, so that there is no lower limit to gamma energy derived from radioactive decay. This radiation commonly has energy of a few hundred keV, and almost always less than 10 MeV. In astronomy, gamma rays are defined by their energy, and no production process needs to be specified. The energies of gamma rays from astronomical sources range to over 10 TeV, an energy far too large to result from radioactive decay. A notable example is extremely powerful bursts of high-energy radiation referred to as long duration gamma-ray bursts, of energies higher than can be produced by radioactive decay. These bursts of gamma rays, thought to be due to the collapse of stars called hypernovae, are the most powerful events so far discovered in the cosmos.
Gamma rays are a form of electromagnetic radiation.
Gamma Ray may also refer to:
- Gamma Ray (band), a German power metal band
- Gamma Ray (EP), extended play recording by Queens of the Stone Age
- "Gamma Ray" (song), by Beck
- "Gamma Ray", a song by the German progressive rock band Birth Control
- "Gamma Ray", a song by Circa Zero from Circus Hero
Gamma Ray is the debut EP from American rock band Gamma Ray, which later became known as Queens of the Stone Age in 1997. It features two songs, both of which would later be re-recorded. "If Only Everything" would later be re-recorded as "If Only" on their 1998 eponymous debut album, while "Born to Hula" would be re-recorded as a b-side on 2000's " The Lost Art of Keeping a Secret", 2004's Stone Age Complication and the reissue of Rated R. It is out of print.
"Gamma Ray" is a song by American rock musician Beck. It was released as the second single from his eighth studio album, Modern Guilt, on August 11, 2008. It is seemingly inspired by the surf rock songs of the 1960s, but with ghostly moans and lyrics on the state of the world. The title refers to gamma rays, biologically hazardous energy emitted by radioactive decay. Despite its up-tempo beat, the song lyrics invoke nihilistic or apocalyptic themes, including melting ice caps, boredom, burning houses, crowns of thorns, and natural disasters.
The single peaked at #19 on the U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart. It was also placed at number 6 on Rolling Stones list of the 100 Best Songs of 2008. The single releases of the song feature a cover of the song by garage punk musician Jay Reatard and a non-album song entitled "Bonfire Blondes" as B-sides, both of which are available on iTunes. The song is included as a playable track in the video game Guitar Hero 5 and was used in Tony Hawk: Ride. Both the A side and B side album cover arts make use of a Houndstooth pattern.