We have identified the structure of three atomic scale defects which almost certainly play important roles in radiation damage in hafnium oxide based metal oxide silicon technology. We find that electron trapping centers dominate the HfO₂ radiation response. We find two radiation induced trapped electron centers in the HfO₂: an O₂⁻ coupled to a hafnium ion and an HfO₂ oxygen vacancy center which is likely both an electron trap and a hole trap. We find that, under some circumstances, Si/dielectric interface traps similar to the Si/SiO₂ P<sub>b</sub> centers are generated by irradiation. Our results show that there are very great atomic scale differences between radiation damage in conventional Si/SiO2 devices and the new Si/dielectric devices based upon HfO₂.