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Radiation Basics Radiation is energy given off by matter in the form of rays or high-speed particles. All matter is composed of atoms.Atoms are made up of various parts; the nucleus contains minute particles called protons and neutrons, and the atom's outer shell contains other particles called electrons. Dec 07, 2015 · Ionizing radiation is a form of energy that acts by removing electrons from atoms and molecules of materials that include air, water, and living tissue. Ionizing radiation can travel unseen and pass through these materials. It is on the right side of the electromagnetic spectrum in the figure below. Jul 16, 2019 · Radiation that carries sufficient energy to free negatively charged electrons from their atoms or molecules is known as ionizing radiation. What remains of the molecule are positively charged atoms. Unstable atom nuclei have the ability to transform themselves spontaneously into other atoms, the process of which results in ionizing radiation.