I had learned that what keeps the protons and neutrons bound is the strong force and the weak force has to do with radioactive decay. but today I read an article from Science Daily that contradicts this. Here is the quote: “Protons and neutrons are made of smaller particles called quarks that are bound together by the strong interaction, which is one of the four known forces of nature: strong force, electromagnetism, weak force and gravity. The weak force exists in the tiny distance within and between protons and neutrons; the strong interaction confines quarks in neutrons and protons.” Can this be clarified by the community? Thanks!
I think it is a poor phrasing. The strong force is responsible for keeping quarks together inside a proton or a neutron, but also between quarks belonging to different proton/neutron (but I am not sure for proton-proton interaction because of the repulsive electromagnetic force).
By contrast, the weak force is responsible for turning one type of quarks into another type or quarks, thus transforming a proton into a neutron in the case of beta+ radioactive decay, with emission of a positron (the overall charge is always conserved).