# Gamma and photons

1. Apr 12, 2005

### Kahsi

Hi!

I hope this is the correct section to post this question in.

What's the difference betwen $$\gamma-decay$$ and photons?

Last edited: Apr 12, 2005
2. Apr 12, 2005

### dextercioby

"Gamma decay",or gamma radiation is typically high energy (gamma(sic)) photons...

Daniel.

3. Apr 12, 2005

### SpaceTiger

Staff Emeritus
$$\gamma$$-rays are high-energy photons. $$\gamma$$-decay is a type of radioactive decay in which $$\gamma$$-rays are emitted.

4. Apr 12, 2005

### Kahsi

So basicly nothing, except that the $$\gamma$$ photons have more energy?

5. Apr 12, 2005

### dextercioby

Yeah,they're on the high-energy part of the spectrum.

Daniel.

6. Apr 12, 2005

### Kahsi

So, thank you both for the help.

7. Apr 12, 2005

### SpaceTiger

Staff Emeritus
If I'm understanding you correctly, then the difference is that one is a type of decay and the other is a type of electromagnetic radiation. The $$\gamma$$ rays emitted in $$\gamma$$ decay are examples of photons, but they're a special type of photon (high-energy, as dexter pointed out).

8. Apr 12, 2005

### Meir Achuz

The term "gamma" for a photon dates back to the early days of experimental radioactivity. Three types of ray, behaving differentlly in a magnetic field, were observed. They were called alpha, beta, and gamma. The gamma rays, which were undeflected, were later found out to be photons. Lower energy photons had already been observed, since the sixth day of creation, as light.