# Calculation Of the energy Of beta decay in tritium

• I

Related High Energy, Nuclear, Particle Physics News on Phys.org
Staff Emeritus
2019 Award
That is out of focus, illegible, and is a wall of numbers. Why not type out your calculation symbolically?

mfb
Mentor
Tritium doesn't decay to another isotope of hydrogen plus an electron, that would violate charge conservation and baryon number conservation. You are also missing one decay product.

I have no idea what you try to calculate in the bottom part. Comments (in English!) would help.

• Atomillo
Tritium doesn't decay to another isotope of hydrogen plus an electron, that would violate charge conservation and baryon number conservation. You are also missing one decay product.

I have no idea what you try to calculate in the bottom part. Comments (in English!) would help.
I tried to calculate the percentatge of mass that converts into energy, then apply it to the 5 grams converted into amus and then input that value into E=MC squared. Also the fórmula is from wikipedia

I tried to calculate the percentatge of mass that converts into energy, then apply it to the 5 grams converted into amus and then input that value into E=MC squared. Also the fórmula is from wikipedia
Sorry. It decay into helium 4. My bad

mfb
Mentor
It doesn't decay to helium-4 either.

If you have 5 grams of tritium where all atoms decay, the released energy will be quite large. It is spread out over decades, however, and you won't find any commercial product that contains 5 grams of tritium.

• Atomillo
Oh. Marketing fooled me. That makes sense, but leaves me with three questions. 1 how many Tritium is in one if the "Tritiglows"?
2 The energy calculated os the total energy produced un all the Life Of the isotope?
3 If thats the case, how can I calculate how many radiation will be produced in one second to convert It into Watts?
And thanks for all the help!

mfb
Mentor
1 how many Tritium is in one if the "Tritiglows"?
That will depend on the specific product.
Tritium costs something like \$100,000 per gram. Consider the price of the product and think how much tritium can be in there at most. The actual number will be much lower than that.
2 The energy calculated os the total energy produced un all the Life Of the isotope?
Well, you calculated the energy released if all atoms decay.
3 If thats the case, how can I calculate how many radiation will be produced in one second to convert It into Watts?
Divide by the lifetime to get the initial decay rate.

• Atomillo
Thank you so much!
Because you answer perfectly my question how can I mark the answer or close the threat? As you can see, im very new, both to the forum and to nuclear physics.

Beta decay does release 18 keV energy per decay event, but not all of it is released in form of beta radiation.
Some of it is released in form of antineutrino, some in form of recoil of the helium 3 cation and some in form of chemical energy of the helium cation.
How can Atomillo calculate the energy that, on average, goes specifically to beta radiation?

mfb
Mentor
Because you answer perfectly my question how can I mark the answer or close the threat?
We typically don't close threads if they don't violate the forum rules, and the checkmark exists in the homework section only.

@snorkack: By integrating over the electron energy spectrum and neglecting the nuclear recoil. Please open a separate thread if you want to continue that.

• Atomillo
Okey when I end the calculus should I post It here?

Ok I have done the calculus of energy emitted in one second by 0,5 gramos of Tritium. The result is about 20,23 Watts. That is two Big or is It okay? Do I upload the math?

mfb
Mentor
That is too high - even if you take the total energy, not just the electron energy.
And 0.5 grams is way too much for commercial applications as well.

Yes. I calculate how many Tritium gas in the vial ( for the dimensiones given) and I got 0,00017 g. Now all the math and results make a lot more sense. Thanks

Bigjoemonger
I would bet the actual amount of radiation being emitted is more towards zero, since tritium beta radiation is very low energy and would likely be stopped by the plastic vial containing it.

mfb
Mentor
It still produces some heat, that is independent of the shielding.

170 microgram is still on the high side for that thing.