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Beta decay

  1. Feb 8, 2004 #1
    During beta decay (eg of strontium) a neutron becomes a proton and an electron. The electron then leaves the atom. The atom (yttrium) must then have one more proton than electron so does beta decay of strontium always leave IONISED yttrium?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 8, 2004 #2
    Yes, that's correct. The daughter molecule will initially be postively ionized, and the beta particle will generally be too energetic to be re-captured by the daughter. In fact, this must be taken into account when you're working out the energy released during beta decay.
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