# What happens when polonium-214 undergoes alpha decay?

Oct 29, 2017

$\text{_84^214"Po" -> ""_82^210"Pb" + ""_2^4"He}$

#### Explanation:

An alpha particle is a Helium ion with a charge of $+ 2$. The number of protons is $2$ and the number of neutrons is $2$. The total mass is $4$.

When an alpha particle is emitted the mass number goes down by $4$ and the atomic number goes down by $2$.

So

• $214 - 4 = 210 \text{ }$ for the mass number

• $84 - 2 = 82 \text{ }$ for the atomic number.

$82$ is the atomic number of Lead, $\text{Pb}$, so the equation is

$\text{_84^214"Po" -> ""_82^210"Pb" + ""_2^4"He}$