What is the difference between cathode rays and beta rays? When the two are travelling in space, can you make out which is the cathode ray and which is the beta ray?
Cathode rays consist of electrons that are accelerated using electrodes. They do not carry high energy and do not harm human body. On the other hand, beta rays consist of highly energetic electrons that can even penetrate and damage human cells. Beta rays are produced by the decay of radioactive nuclei. If the two are travelling in space, they can be distinguished by the phenomenon named production of Bremsstrahlung radiation, which is produced by the deceleration of a high energy particle when deflected by another charged particle, leading to the emission of blue light. Only beta rays are capable of producing it.