Particle physics is the study of the fundamental forces of nature as they are embodied in the interactions of elementary and composite particles at high energies and short time and distance scales.

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What is meant by “combinatorial background” in experimental high energy physics

My guess is that they find a certain tracks coming from a certain source by "combintaorially" selecting all track pairs and finding their invariant mass. If this is true, of which I am not sure, how ...
8
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3answers
586 views

Why muonium is unstable?

This question is closely related to my previous question Bound states in QED. Muonium is a system of electron and anti-muon. This article in wikipedia claims that muonium is unstable. QUESTION: Why ...
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1answer
233 views

Transition of Electric Charge In Collision Between Proton And Antiproton

I know that $$p+\bar{p}\to 4\pi^++4\pi^-+(\gamma)$$ Before the collision, the sum of absolute electric charge value is $2$. $$\left | +1 \right |+\left | -1 \right |=2$$ After the collision, the ...
16
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3answers
2k views

Decay of massless particles

We don't normally consider the possibility that massless particles could undergo radioactive decay. There are elementary arguments that make it sound implausible. (A bunch of the following is ...
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1answer
846 views

How to determine the mass of a quark?

As far as I know quarks are never found in isolation, so how can we determine their rest mass?
8
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1answer
285 views

A moderate introduction to Hanbury Brown Twiss interferometry in particle physics

For astronomy, as originally invented, the Hanbury Brown Twiss interferometer is good for finding the angular diameter of stars and is not a rapidly fluctuating observable like the amplitude in ...
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2answers
3k views

Why is pseudorapidity defined as $-\log \tan \theta/2$

Why the log? Is it there to make the growth of the function slower? As this is a common experimental observable, it doesn't seem reasonable to take the range from $[0,\infty)$ to $(-\infty,\infty)$ ...
11
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1answer
1k views

Cross-section in relativistic limit: Fermi's golden rule still valid?

In order to calculate the cross-section of an interaction process the following formula is often used for first approximations: $$ \sigma = \frac {2\pi} {\hbar\,v_i} \left| ...
3
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1answer
421 views

How large is the information collected from an inverse femtobarn of collisions?

I ran into this while looking at measures of humongous amounts of data. How does the information (data) collected in an inverse femtobarn exposure compare to a gigabyte of data ?
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1answer
202 views

muon neutrino momentum distribution

muon neutrino momentum distribution I have read the public data of T2K ,KEK to find this subject, I'm curiously that it's coincides with my prediction perfectly: The neutrino get its momemtum by its ...
10
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3answers
1k views

Why does the weak force distinguish left and right handedness?

I'm wondering why the weak interaction only affects left-handed particles (and right-handed antiparticles). Before someone says "because thats just the way nature is" :-), let me explain what I find ...
15
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1answer
5k views

Are all electrons identical?

Why should two sub-atomic (or elementary particle) - say electrons need to have identical static properties - identical mass, identical charge? Why can't they differ between each other by a very ...
7
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3answers
377 views

why certain superpositions of quantum states are supressed?

it has been said that the electron is the fundamental representation of the Poincare group, with only two conmuting observables, $( \sigma , p_{\mu})$. This question regards what is usually called the ...
9
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1answer
577 views

Universality in Weak Interactions

I'm currently preparing for an examination of course in introductory (experimental) particle physics. One topic that we covered and that I'm currently revising is the universality in weak ...
0
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2answers
703 views

Iron Man repulsor question [closed]

Ignoring the whole movie situation along with the power demands, what do you think Iron Man's repulsors use to "repulse" his targets? I don't think they are lasers or electric beams, or "reverse ...
4
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2answers
798 views

Is nature symmetric between particles and antiparticles?

Is nature symmetric with respect to presence of particles? Do we have an antiparticle for every particle thought of? Are there any proven examples where we don't have an antiparticle? And what about ...
7
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2answers
737 views

What does the data in various stages of analysis from a particle collision look like?

I've been following the news around the work they are doing at the LHC particle accelerator in CERN. I am wondering what the raw data that is used to visualize the collisions looks like. Maybe someone ...
12
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2answers
409 views

Alejandro Rivero's correspondence: diquarks and mesons as superpartners of quarks and leptons

The idea of “hadronic supersymmetry” originated in the mid-1960s and derives from the observation that baryons and mesons have similar Regge slopes, as if antiquarks and diquarks are superpartners. ...
6
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1answer
249 views

Parametrisation of general MSSM/SUSY based on collider experiment observables

The full MSSM contains 120 parameters. In SUSY searches, one usually picks a model like MSUGRA which makes a few assumptions and only has 5 free parameters like $m_0$, $m_{1/2}$, .... Now, I'm ...
15
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2answers
1k views

How does one experimentally determine chirality, helicity, spin and angular momentum of a fundamental particle?

If I've got an instance of a fundamental particle, how can I separate out the measurements of these four quantities? (I think) I understand the theory behind them, and why the particles in the ...
0
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1answer
242 views

What happens when light moves perpendicular to a moving object?

Imagine the folllowing situation: A coherent light source is attached to a car such that the emitted light beam path is "being crossed over" by the car i.e. the long parallel light beams are struck by ...
12
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3answers
2k views

What does it mean that the neutral pion is a mixture of quarks?

The quark composition of the neutral pion ($\pi^0$) is $\frac{u\bar{u} - d\bar{d}}{\sqrt{2}}$. What does this actually mean? I think it's bizarre that a particle doesn't have a definite composition. ...
3
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1answer
293 views

Does kaon decay etc prove “CP violation” or just “CP or CPT violation”

Shlomo Sternberg (math professor at Harvard) wrote a book called "Group theory and physics". On p156 (link) there's a strange offhand comment: "Experiments done in 1964 by Fitch and Cronin seem to ...
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1answer
247 views

Is there literature on a continuous mass spectrum for the Higgs field?

Various masses for the Higgs field are compatible with experiment, but is it possible that the Higgs field is not observable because it has a continuous mass spectrum? Work in the 60s and 70s on free ...
8
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1answer
361 views

What properties of Germanium make it suitable for Dark Matter detectors?

What properties of Germanium make it suitable for Dark Matter detectors? I tried googling but there was too many results describing the use of Germanium Chrystals at low tempretures for Dark Matter ...
7
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1answer
495 views

Why are higher generation of matter unstable?

My secondary school physics textbook has mentioned that protons and neutrons are made up of down and up quarks in different amounts. It has also mentioned that other quarks exist. It states that ...
4
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1answer
454 views

Detection of W and Z bosons

What specific behaviour confirmed the existence of the W and Z bosons at the UA1 and UA2 experiments? Thanks!
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2answers
3k views

Is it pions or gluons that mediate the strong force between nucleons?

From my recent experience teaching high school students I've found that they are taught that the strong force between nucleons is mediated by virtual-pion exchange, whereas between quarks it's gluons. ...
5
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1answer
608 views

7 GeV dark matter particle: how particle accelerators missed it?

This posting is regarding the recent confirmation of the DAMA results that might be due to underlying differences in proton and neutron cross section with the dark matter particles, which reflect on ...
17
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2answers
877 views

Correlation between outstanding hints in experimental particle physics

The 115 GeV ATLAS Higgs with enhanced diphoton decays has gone away but there are several other recent tantalizing hints relevant for particle physics, namely CoGeNT's 7-8 GeV dark matter particle ...
2
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1answer
120 views

experimental setup to measure Center-Of-Momenta of products from spontaneous radiactive decay

This question is an attempt to complement this other question about fluctuations in radiactive decay. This question is completely experimental though: in general, suppose i have certain sample of a ...
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2answers
588 views

What is the fastest process or shortest time in nature?

We know about some events that happen very quickly. For example, the dielectric relaxation time is about $10^{-14}\, \mathrm{seconds}$. I'm interested in other processes that switch extremely fast ...
2
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1answer
189 views

Why are the third generation superpartners lighter than the other sfermions in MSUGRA

In the MSUGRA breaking scenario, the stop particle typically appears at energies reachable at the LHC. Other sfermions, notably the partners of up, down, strange and charm are assumed to be degenerate ...
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2answers
287 views

What happens if up quarks are replaced by down quarks and down quarks are replaced by up quarks?

I believe the quarks would flip the proton's internal charge, reverse the spin of the proton, transform into another flavor, and then become unconfined and free.
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2answers
374 views

More on matter and anti-matter

1.) Does every particle that has rest mass also have an anti-particle with which it would annihilate? 2.) Does annihilation only occur between like particles? For example what happens if a ...
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6answers
6k views

How come neutrons in a nucleus don't decay?

I know outside a nucleus, neutrons are unstable and they have half life of about 15 minutes. But when they are together with protons inside the nucleus, they are stable. How does that happen? I got ...
4
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1answer
399 views

What's so unphysical about $W^{\mu}_3$ and $B^{\mu}$?

Imposing SU(2) and U(1) local gauge invariance introduces 4 gauge bosons, two of which correspond to $W^{\pm}$ bosons. The other two gauge fields $W^{\mu}_3$ and $B^{\mu}$ however are said not to ...
6
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2answers
275 views

Is there a theoretical upper bound on the mass any new particles can have?

One possible outcome of the collision experiments at LHC is the discovery of new elementary particles with large mass. Is there a theoretical way to derive an upper bound on the mass of elementary ...
13
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2answers
1k views

115 GeV, 170 GeV, and the noncommutative standard model

Several years ago, noncommutative geometry was used to describe the standard model, somehow yielding a prediction of 170 GeV for the mass of the Higgs boson, a prediction which was falsified a few ...
7
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2answers
267 views

What are the main differences between $p p$ and $p \bar p$ colliders

I know that it is somehow related to the parton distribution functions, allowing specific reactions with gluons instead of quarks and anti-quarks, but I would really appreciate more detailed answers ! ...
11
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1answer
3k views

What is the significance of the QCD scale parameter $\Lambda$?

I see that it appears as a constant in the relation for the running of the strong coupling constant. What is its significance? Does it have to be established by experiment? Is it somehow a scale for ...
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2answers
1k views

What is the difference between 'running' and 'current' quark mass?

When looking at the PDG, there is a difference between the 'running' and the 'current' quark masses. Does anyone know which is the difference between these two?
13
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2answers
876 views

What is the current status of the anomalous muon magnetic moment?

Many years ago, a discrepancy was found between the experimentally measured value of the muon magnetic moment, and the theoretically calculated value. Shockingly, most physicists were blase about it. ...
2
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1answer
197 views

When do we expect to get results from the LHC?

At the current LHC luminosities, will it take years to detect the Higgs boson, superpartners, or any other forms of new physics at the LHC? What should particle physicists do in the meantime? We ...
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5answers
2k views

Is there the smallest particle that can be guaranteed to be unable to be broken down into smaller particles?

Is there the smallest particle that can be guaranteed to be unable to be broken down into smaller particles?
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1answer
111 views

Where can I get the most accurate measurements of parton distribution functions?

Where would I look to get the most accurate experimental values of parton distribution functions for the proton? I know these functions aren't measured directly, but I'd basically like to find a fit ...
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2answers
567 views

Where can I find the measured magnetic moments of the quarks?

I read that the magnetic moment of the proton can be expressed as the sum of the magnetic moments of the three quarks like $\mu_p = \frac{4}{3}\mu_u - \frac{1}{3}\mu_d$. But I couldn't find a table ...
6
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3answers
575 views

Is there a maximum number of types of elementary particles?

Doing a Google search i found a paper called The maximum number of elementary particles in a super symmetric extension of the standard model. It claims in the abstract that the upper bound is 84 (i ...
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1answer
215 views

Is the quantum state or information of a particle is all that differentiates it from another particle?

So I have learned in my QM classes that you can't tell one electron from another electron. They are indistinguishable. I also learned that the wavefunction of a particle includes the spacial part and ...
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6answers
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Is there an equation for the strong nuclear force?

The equation describing the force due to gravity is $$F = G \frac{m_1 m_2}{r^2}.$$ Similarly the force due to the electrostatic force is $$F = k \frac{q_1 q_2}{r^2}.$$ Is there a similar equation ...