Asked • 07/30/19

Why alpha particles inestead of hydrogen or duetereum?

I know atoms undergoing alpha decay emit alpha particles, but I was wondering why specifically helium nuclei? If these atoms wanted to emit the smallest unit of matter (I'm talking about hadrons here, not subatomic) they could just emit hydrogen nuclei, or if they wanted to emit the smallest unit of protons/neutrons attached together they could just emit deuterium. Yet for some reason, they choose to emit helium nuclei. Any thoughts?

1 Expert Answer


Heidi T. answered • 08/30/19

5 (11)

MS in Mathematics, PhD in Physics, 7+ years teaching experience

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