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Beta Decay

  1. Oct 9, 2006 #1
    In beta decay, an antibuetrino or an positron is emitted from the nucleus. how is this possible? how can antimatter come directly from matter? This is pizzling...:confused:
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 9, 2006 #2
  4. Oct 9, 2006 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    In beta decay, a neutron transforms into a proton, an electron and electron-associated antineutrino, of which the electron and antineutrino are emitted from the nucleus.

    In positron emission, a proton transforms into a neutron, positron and neutrino.

    The designation of particle and antiparticle is one convention, and particularly in this case, having to do with spin in addition to conservation of baryons and leptons.

    Neutrinos and electrons, and their antiparticles are leptons.

    http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/Hbase/particles/lepton.html#c7 - table

    http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/Hbase/particles/hadron.html#c6 - baryons
    http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/Hbase/particles/baryon.html - table


    Neutrino -
    This discusses the 'left-handedness' of neutrinos.
  5. Oct 10, 2006 #4


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    Gold Member

    Does it? First of all, it is not a direct process, there is a W boson in the middle. the W disintegrates into a pair matter/antimatter.

    It is true that the W is a quantum particle, but it is not a particle of matter, if is a particle of force, as the photon is.

    At first order of approximation, force particles can either be absorbed by a particle, or desintegrate into pairs of matter/antimatter (or also force/antiforce but this is rarer).
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2006
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