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Mu Capture, Beta Decay, and Pi-Meson Decay

Goldberger, M. L. (1959) Mu Capture, Beta Decay, and Pi-Meson Decay. Reviews of Modern Physics, 31 (3). pp. 797-801. ISSN 0034-6861.

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In the original Yukawa formulation of meson theory, the π meson (as we now believe Yukawa's particle to be) was to provide a natural explanation for β decay. The process π → e + ν[bar] was regarded as an elementary interaction and nuclear β decay was imagined to proceed by the route n → p + π → μ + e + ν[bar]. There are a variety of reasons why this scheme fails. Just the opposite point of view is now generally adopted, namely, that the nuclear β decay is fundamental and that the observed decay of the π meson is to be explained in terms of it. We do not exclude the possibility that β decay be described in terms of an as yet unknown heavy intermediate. Nevertheless, the nuclear β decay is to be regarded as essentially primary. In order to describe the actual dominant π-meson decay mode π → μ + ν[bar] it is necessary to assume the existence of another β decay like process, μ-meson capture. The elementary process may be described as μ + p → n + ν, or equally well as n + p[bar] → μ + ν[bar]; the first is the experimentally observed μ-meson absorption reaction, whereas, the second, the annihilation of a neutron and an antiproton, plays an important role in π-meson decay.

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Additional Information:© 1959 The American Physical Society.
Issue or Number:3
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20140807-144206136
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:48197
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:07 Aug 2014 22:04
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 07:01

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