Q value of beta minus decay

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Summary:

The given image shows the derivation of Q value in a beta minus decay. Now according to my understanding the electron released is formed from a neutron which converts to a proton and an electron within the nucleus , and has no relation with the orbital electrons. Then why is it that in the second bracket it has been given (Z+1)*m(e) and not Z*m(e) only.

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beta.png
 

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  • #2
vanhees71
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It's because they define and calculate it in terms of the mass of the neutral atoms, which includes the mass of the electrons, and the daughter of a ##\beta##-decay nucleus has one more proton and thus also the corresponding atom one more electron than the mother nucleus/atom.
 
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That clears it for me , thank you !
 

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