# How can transmutation occur in a stable isotope?

Jul 26, 2014

Artificial transmutation causes the transmutation of stable isotopes.

Transmutation is the conversion of the atoms of one element into atoms of another element.

Artificial transmutation occurs when atoms of an element are bombarded with high-energy particles in a nuclear reactor.

The bombarding particles are often alpha particles or deuterons.

Some examples are

1. The transmutation of nitrogen to oxygen

$\text{_2^4"He}$ + $\text{_7^14"N}$$\text{_8^17"O}$ + $\text{_1^1"H}$

2. The transmutation of molybdenum to technetium

$\text{_42^96"Mo}$ + $\text{_1^2"H}$$\text{_43^97"Tc}$ + $\text{_0^1"n}$