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The low-energy recoiling ions from the β decay of Sb134 were studied by using the Beta-decay Paul Trap. Using this apparatus, singly charged ions were suspended in vacuum at the center of a detector array used to detect emitted β particles, γ rays, and recoil ions in coincidence. The recoil ions emerge from the trap with negligible scattering, allowing β-decay properties and the charge-state distribution of the daughter ions to be determined from the β-ion coincidences. First-forbidden β-decay theory predicts a β-ν correlation coefficient of nearly unity for the 0- to 0+ transition from the ground state of Sb134 to the ground state of Te134. Although this transition was expected to have a nearly 100% branching ratio, an additional 17.2(52)% of the β-decay strength must populate high-lying excited states to obtain an angular correlation consistent with unity. The extracted charge-state distribution of the recoiling ions was compared with existing β-decay results and the average charge state was found to be consistent with the results from lighter nuclei.

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Physical Review C