When high-energy radiation interacts with matter energy can be transferred to the material. A number of effects may follow, but a common outcome is the ionisation or excitation of the atoms in the absorbing material.
In general, the larger the mass of the particle the greater the chance of being absorbed by the material. Large particles such as alpha particles have a relatively short range in matter, whereas beta particles are more penetrating. The extremely small mass of the neutrino, and the fact that it has no charge, means that it interacts poorly with material, and is very hard to stop or detect. High-energy photons, being massless, are highly penetrating.
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