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Beta Particles -- range of energies?

  1. Mar 5, 2015 #1
    Hello, I was wondering if someone could explain to me what does it meant that a beta particle has a range of energies ? Thanks
     
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  3. Mar 5, 2015 #2

    mfb

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    A single particle has a single energy, but different particles (coming from decays of the same type of atom) have different energies (a spectrum from "nearly zero" to some maximum value). That is different from alpha and gamma decays where you get fixed energies for all emitted particles.
     
  4. Mar 5, 2015 #3

    Simon Bridge

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    Depends on the context - where did you see this?
     
  5. Mar 5, 2015 #4
    to add to this, check out the energy spectrum on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beta_decay and the section on energy release
     
  6. Mar 5, 2015 #5

    ChrisVer

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    That is the result of the three-body products....
    For example, the case where [itex]x=A[/itex] has a single solution. However what happens if I tell you that [itex]x+y =A[/itex] ?
    As the wiki states, the beta and the corresponding neutrino carry out the energy [itex]Q[/itex]...
    If you had only one electron, it's energy would be given by [itex]E_\beta =Q[/itex]... with the neutrino however you have [itex]E_\beta + E_\nu = Q [/itex]
     
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