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Before the neutrino hypothesis, the beta decay process was thought to be the transition, N→ P+ē. If this was true, show that if the neutron was at rest, the proton and electron would emerge with fixed energies and calculate them. Experimentally, the electron energy was found to have a large range.

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Here we have to observe the before and after cases of the \beta-decay. The neutron was at rest before \beta-decay. Therefore, energy of neutron En = mnc2 and momentum(pn) = 0

After \beta-decay, momentum of neutron (p)n= momentum of proton (pp) + momentum of electron (pe)

pc= mnc2 – mpc2 = 938 MeV – 936 MeV = 2 MeV

Therefore, Energy of proton, Ep = 936 MeV

Therefore, energy of electron, Ee = 2.06 MeV

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