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Binomial and Poisson Distributions in Real Life

Examples of the binomial and Poisson distributions are all around us.

- Identify a real-life example or application of either the binomial or poisson distribution.
- Specify how the conditions for that distribution are met.
- Suggest reasonable values for n and p (binomial) or mu (poisson) for your example.
- Calculate the mean and standard deviation of the distribution for your example.

Solution Preview

A good example of the Poisson distribution is radioactive decay measurements. Say we have a sample of a radioactive substance with an activity of 1 Becqurel, i.e., 1 decay per second. This means that on the average, one atom from the sample decays every second. Every second, the probability that one atom decays is e^-1, or ...

Solution Summary

This solution identifies a real-life example (using radioactive decay) of a Poisson distribution, shows how the specifications for that type of distribution are met by the example, suggests a reasonable value for mu, and shows how to calculate the mean and standard deviation of this distribution..