1. Not finding help here? Sign up for a free 30min tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Electron Decay x-rays

  1. Apr 14, 2012 #1

    MacLaddy

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    This question actually comes from my chemistry class, but I believe it is more suited for this forum.

    When the process of Electron Capture occurs, proton + e --> n, an x-ray is emitted. Why is that x-ray emitted and not a photon of lower energy.

    2. Relevant equations

    No idea

    3. The attempt at a solution

    This is an extra credit question, and I don't even know where to start. Our book doesn't even have a nuclear chemistry chapter. From some online sleuthing I can see that energy is released as electrons collapse, from the inner-most orbital out, but I do not understand why it would be an x-ray instead of a lower energy photon.

    A point in the right direction would be appreciated. I might be able to understand some calculus if it's mathy, but I am not done with that class quite yet.

    Thanks,
    Mac
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 14, 2012 #2
    in the process of electron capture the enregy released is very high. So a high energy photon is emitted. That is what x-ray is(a high energy photon).
     
  4. Apr 14, 2012 #3

    MacLaddy

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Thank you. That's about the answer I submitted, but I was hoping I could show some of the calculations behind it.

    For now though, I'll digress. I probably wouldn't understand most of it anyway at this juncture.
     
  5. Apr 14, 2012 #4
    Ohk there are things i would like to say

    1) the equation you have written is incorrect
    p+e=n+nutrino is the right reaction.

    2)X-ray is a not a part of above reaction. X-rays are not emitted generally in a nuclear reaction. Gamma rays emmited in nuclear reactions.

    3)Yes X- rays are produced but after the K-capture. A vacancy is created in inner shell due to which an electron jumps from higher shell to the inner shell. The electron during jumping emits a photon to loose energy.

    4) A simple question for you. As you have said you are good in maths. Can you calculate the energy of the photon if electron jumps from nth shell .
     
  6. Apr 14, 2012 #5

    There is nothing like 'nuclear chemistry'. Every thing at nulear level is physics.
     
  7. Apr 14, 2012 #6

    MacLaddy

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    I think I'll pass for now, thanks. Maybe when I actually am good at maths. (if ever)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_chemistry

    https://www.amazon.com/Modern-Nuclear-Chemistry-Walter-Loveland/dp/0471115320
     
  8. Apr 14, 2012 #7
    This wasnt the kind of reaction i was expecting. I am not challenging you. I am just trying a healthy discussion. And please excuse my poor english. I might sound rude even when i am potile.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: Electron Decay x-rays
  1. X rays (Replies: 2)

Loading...