Question

Beryllium-8 is an unstable isotope and decays into two α particles, which are helium nuclei with mass 6.68×10−27kg﻿. This decay process releases 1.5×10−14J﻿ of energy. For this problem, let's assume that the mass of the Beryllium-8 nucleus is just twice the mass of an α particle and that all the energy released in the decay becomes kinetic energy of the α particles. If the Beryllium-8 nucleus is moving in the positive x-direction with a speed of 1.0×106 m/s when it decays, what is the speed of the slower-moving α particle after it is released? Assume that the α particles move entirely in the x-direction.

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