Astrophysics (index)

Beta Decay

(β decay)
(radioactivity such that an electron or positron is emitted)

Beta Decay is radioactive decay in which a nucleus emits a beta particle, leaving the nucleus with virtually the same atomic weight but with an atomic number one more (if the beta particle is an electron) or less (positron). Synthesis of elements often involves a Neutron Capture or Alpha Capture leading to an unstable isotope followed by beta decay one or more times until the nucleus is again stable.


Referenced by:
Alpha Capture
Alpha Process
Valley of Beta Stability