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This exposure kills a lot of the bacteria that cause spoilage, so the produce stays fresh longer.
Eggs and some meat, such as beef, pork, and poultry, can also be irradiated.
Radioactive isotopes have a variety of applications.
Iodine-131 has a half-life of only 8 d, so the potential for damage due to exposure is minimal.
Radioactive isotopes are effective tracers because their radioactivity is easy to detect.
A is a substance that can be used to follow the pathway of that substance through some structure.
For example, if a thyroid tumor were detected, a much larger infusion (thousands of rem, as opposed to a diagnostic dose of less than 40 rem) of iodine-131 could help destroy the tumor cells.
Similarly, radioactive strontium is used to not only detect but also ease the pain of bone cancers.