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Posted by / 11-Jul-2019 07:36

In other words, the probability of a radioactive atom decaying within its half-life is 50%.For example, the image on the right is a simulation of many identical atoms undergoing radioactive decay.In such cases, the half-life is defined the same way as before: as the time elapsed before half of the original quantity has decayed.However, unlike in an exponential decay, the half-life depends on the initial quantity, and the prospective half-life will change over time as the quantity decays.

Simulation of many identical atoms undergoing radioactive decay, starting with either 4 atoms per box (left) or 400 (right).After another 5,730 years, one-quarter of the original will remain.On the other hand, the time it will take a puddle to half-evaporate depends on how deep the puddle is.In a medical context, the half-life may also describe the time that it takes for the concentration of a substance in blood plasma to reach one-half of its steady-state value (the "plasma half-life").The relationship between the biological and plasma half-lives of a substance can be complex, due to factors including accumulation in tissues, active metabolites, and receptor interactions.

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Thus, the mixture taken as a whole will not decay by halves.