Neutron decay?

1. Feb 17, 2007

satrohraj

Free Neutron decays into proton, electron and neutrino.

neutron --> proton + electron + v (neutrino)
----
My Question:
Neutron is chargeless. How can it give proton and neutron which are charged ?

(If the question is simple i am sorry, I am new to nuclear physics)

2. Feb 17, 2007

Astronuc

Staff Emeritus
3. Feb 17, 2007

satrohraj

Thats not my point..
Can a neutral particle generate charged particle?

That is what happened there..

4. Feb 17, 2007

arunma

This is possible because the net charge of the entire system is still zero. Charge is conserved, so it all works out. I guess that naively, one could think of the neutron as a proton and an electron put together (which would be why neutron has no net charge). If that helps, anyway...

5. Feb 17, 2007

satrohraj

I get it, Thanks.

6. Mar 7, 2007

QuantumPion

A neutron is composed of 2 down quarks and 1 up quark. An up quark has a charge of +2/3, while down quarks have a charge of -1/3. In beta decay, a down quark turns into an up quark and emits an electron and a neutrino.

7. Mar 16, 2007

mormonator_rm

Don't forget the virtual W- boson here...

d --> u + W-
W- --> e- + nubar

so that;

n --> p + e- + nubar

(sorry I don't use LaTeX that often) Note that both baryon number and lepton number are conserved here. That is very important...

8. Apr 6, 2007

WeakCarrier

neutron contains 3 quarks with the charges of 2/3+, 1/3-,1/3- so a -1/3 dcays into a +2/3 releasing a weak carrier particle which in turn decays into electron anti neutrino and a electron.

Edit:Just saw the post above me.But also matter (particle with odd-half spin is conserved.
HOW? Here:
Say fermions were +1 and bosons were 0 and antifermions were -1
the decay would look like this
+1(neutron) -> (proton) +1 and +1 (electron) and -1(antineutrino)
so 1 = 2- -1= 1
hope you understand

9. Nov 14, 2010

nickthrop101

if two substances have the same amount of charge, but one positive and one negative, then it has a neutral charge :)

10. Nov 14, 2010