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Positron is as "elementary" as the electron, in the current theory. Period. I took the word "elementary" in quote marks because if you hit a charged particle, it gets "broken apart" into the following pieces: the same charge and lots of neutral photons. It looks like the "target" is not that "elementary", but has "internal degrees of freedom", and sometimes ...


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Positron IS an elementary particle, the anti-particle to the electron as you already know. But we do not get a "free positron" as a "free electron". They are usually generated through pair-production and get annihilated fast, or through radioactive decay (beta-decay) in weak interactions or in particle accelerators, and are present in cosmic rays too. A ...


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Indeed, every fundamental particle is precisely the same. I think Griffiths quantum book is the one that uses the evocative phrasing "not even God can tell them apart". This is not just philosophy, it actually has important consequences. When we do many-body physics and thermodynamics, we often talk about the total number of states of the system. For ...


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Statistical mechanics of fluids and gases has been developed to account for situations where there are many individual particles which can not be individually traced. I think the philosophical basis for statistical analysis is that one deals with separate particles, each having an element of randomness in their trajectories due to unknown past histories and ...


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Since you've posited full containment the conceptually "easy" approach is to try to pick out the sign of the beta in the decay state. Difficulties: The decay may happen a frame or two down the data stream. Drat you, oh 2.2 ms lifetime! Both options are likely to shower, and while the positron ought to form a double or triple shower when it annihilates, ...



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