What is Gauge bosons: Definition and 32 Discussions

In particle physics, a gauge boson is a force carrier, a bosonic particle that carries any of the fundamental interactions of nature, commonly called forces. Elementary particles, whose interactions are described by a gauge theory, interact with each other by the exchange of gauge bosons—usually as virtual particles.
All known gauge bosons have a spin of 1; for comparison, the Higgs boson has spin zero. Therefore, all known gauge bosons are vector bosons.
Gauge bosons are different from the other kinds of bosons: first, fundamental scalar bosons (the Higgs boson); second, mesons, which are composite bosons, made of quarks; third, larger composite, non-force-carrying bosons, such as certain atoms.

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  1. Pradyuman

    A How can gauge fields be associated with real particles?

    When we make our lagrangian invariant by U(1) symmetry we employ the fact that nature doesn't care how I describe it, but, how come that I can associate the real physical particles with the coordinates I use to describe? Even though gauge symmetry is not a physical Symmetry,
  2. weningth

    A Why does this amplitude not vanish by the Ward identity?

    Consider the process e^-\rightarrow e^-\gamma depicted in the following Feynman diagram. The spin-averaged amplitude with linearly polarised photons is \overline{|M|^2}=8\pi\alpha\left(-g^{\mu\nu}+\epsilon^\mu_+\epsilon^\nu_-+\epsilon^\mu_-\epsilon^\nu_+\right)\left(p_\mu p^\prime_\nu+p_\nu...
  3. Michael Price

    A Massive gauge bosons in QFT in/out states

    Because massive gauge bosons have a finite half life, are they excluded from the (infinitely, asymptotically remote?) in and out states of QFT? Or, to put it another way, are they restricted to the internal legs of Feynman diagrams, i.e. to being virtual only? We can see W and Z tracks in...
  4. tomdodd4598

    I Do the SU(n) generators represent any observables?

    Hey there, I've recently been trying to get my head around Yang-Mills gauge theory and was just wandering: do the Pauli matrices for su(2), Gell-Mann matrices for su(3), etc. represent any important observable quantities? After all, they are Hermitian operators and act on the doublets and...
  5. V

    Rewriting neutral gauge bosons (EW) for vacuum with Y=-1

    Homework Statement So, my textbook proposes a to check what will change in mass and mass eigenvectors of Z and photon in terms of ##W_{3}## and ##B_{\mu}## fields in Higgs mechanism for EW if we choose a vacuum hypercharge to be -1 and compare results to SM (where we know that photon is...
  6. S

    A Polarization of gauge bosons and gauge choice

    Consider the following facts: 1. For a particle with momentum ##k##, the two transverse polarization vectors ##\epsilon({\bf k}, \lambda_{1})## and ##\epsilon({\bf k}, \lambda_{1})## are purely spatial and orthogonal to ##\bf k##, that is, ##\epsilon^{0}({\bf k}, \lambda_{1}) = 0,##...
  7. S

    A HIggs coupling to electroweak gauge bosons

    The coupling of the Higgs boson to the electroweak gauge bosons in the Standard model is given by $$\mathcal{L}_{\text{H-g}} = - \left( \frac{H}{v} + \frac{H^{2}}{2v^{2}} \right) \left(2M_{W}^{2}W_{\mu}^{+}W^{-\mu} + M_{Z}^{2}Z_{\mu}Z^{\mu} \right).$$ However, in Cliff Burgess' textbook 'The...
  8. Andrea_G

    A Four Bosons vertex related to gauge symmetry

    Hi, is correct to say that there is no interaction between four photons because the gauge group of QED is U (1) while there are interactions of four gluons or four W's because the gauge group of QCD is SU (3) and EW's one is SU (2) xU (1)? I know that the interaction between four photons is not...
  9. M

    Composite Gauge Bosons: Supersymmetric SU(4) Example

    Buried in a recent talk by John Ellis, the following passage: Reference 92 is Weinberg & Witten 1980, reference 93 is a talk by Zohar Komargodski at the same meeting.
  10. T

    Gauge bosons and the weak mixing angle

    <<Mentor note: Moved from other thread.>> I have 4 questions: 1. Why Weinberg angle affects neutral boson mixing, while W+ and W- are unaffected? 2. Is there any relation between Weinberg angle and CP violation angle? Are they absolutely independent? 3. How our world would be different if...
  11. PeterDonis

    Antiparticles of Standard Model gauge bosons

    From a recent thread: Is this true of gluons? Doesn't the color charge invert under CPT? (For example, a red-antigreen gluon's antiparticle would be a green-antired antigluon.)
  12. AlanKirby

    Why can only the weak interaction change quark flavour?

    Hi there, so my question is as follows. I understand that only the weak interaction can change the flavour of a quark, but why? Idea 1: It's due to the change in flavour also meaning a change in mass, thus a massive exchange particle is needed (gravity is negligible so forget the massive...
  13. Islam Hassan

    Electric Charge vs Mass in Gauge Bosons

    Is there any significance to the fact that: The electromagnetic and strong interactions have gauge bosons with no electric charge that are massless; and The weak interaction has two massive gauge bosons which do have electric charge. If there is a significance to this 'observation' then where...
  14. R

    How do the W and Z Gauge Bosons work in the weak nuclear force?

    I've seen explanations that when a neutrino with a W+ Boson comes near a neutron, it affects one of the bottom quarks and changes it to a up quark which effectively turns the neutron into a proton. The neutrino then turns into an electron. Source: (2:20 onwards) I've seen other explanations...
  15. Safinaz

    The electroweak gauge bosons

    Hi all, I have the following exercise about the The electroweak gauge bosons commutations relations: Homework Statement If ## [ \tau_i ,\tau_k] = 2 i \epsilon_{ikl} \tau_l ## and ## \{ \tau_i ,\tau_k\} = 2 \delta_{ik} ## where ## \bar{\tau} ## are the Pauli matrices, Then...
  16. B

    What prevents mass-less gauge bosons and gravity going faster than c?

    Whether traveling at c in the form of radiation and carrying energy in the process or to exert the force propagated by force fields, the mass-less gauge bosons cannot go faster than c and even the gravitational force which is caused by the space-time curvature or hypothetically gravitons cannot...
  17. bcrowell

    Gauge invariance requires gauge bosons, why not for neutral fermions?

    My understanding is that for electrons, there is a standard argument that the electromagnetic interaction between them is required, not optional. Since they're identical particles, we should be able to take the wavefunction of two electrons and mix up their identities by any amount we like, and...
  18. N

    Does the Higgs field give mass to all particles or only to gauge bosons?

    The title says it all. I've seen an example worked out, and there mass was given to a gauge boson specifically. Also, I wouldn't know why the Higgs boson would want to give mass to the fermions, since they already have mass in the Yang-Mills theories; it's only the gauge bosons that initially...
  19. J

    How are gauge bosons created?

    Sorry for the newbie question. Just slap me and direct me to the right post. I did some searches but couldn't find my answer. If a fundamental particle must exert one of the fundamental forces against another fundamental particle, are the appropriate gauges boson then created by the first...
  20. F

    What is meant by saying that the Goldstone-bosons are eaten by gauge bosons?

    What is meant by saying that the Goldstone-bosons are "eaten" by gauge bosons? I've seen this statement all over, but can't find a good explanation of what this actually means. Anyone care to shed some light?
  21. T

    Do Gauge Bosons have anti-particles?

    Can two Bosons 'collide' in the same sense as the Fermions (Since Pauli's exclusion principle is not applicable for Bosons)? The Leptons have anti-leptons (positron, anti-muon, anti-tau and three anti-neutrinos). Each of the 6 Quarks have their corresponding anti-quark. So, do the gauge bosons...
  22. tom.stoer

    Two spin d.o.f. for massless gauge bosons

    It is well know that massless spin-1 gauge bosons have two spin states s³=+1 and s³=-1. There are two independent approaches how this can be shown: 1) via the representations of the Lorentz group for p²=0 2) via fixing / eliminating unphysical gauge d.o.f., e.g. via elimination of the...
  23. M

    How do fermions acquire mass as opposed to gauge bosons?

    Hello, if someone could enlighten me I'd be most grateful. Also, if anybody could point me in the direction of some really good free resources that would be great too. Thanks.
  24. T

    Are W and T gauge bosons?

    I've left particle physics after my diploma a few years ago so I am not familiar with all of the slang, anymore. My question is pretty simple: How common is it to call the W and the Z boson "gauge bosons" in professional physics. Is it pretty much not used and seen as a sign of the person...
  25. T

    Gauge Bosons and the Pion Particle

    Quick question. If particles that mediate interactions are called gauge bosons, why isn't Pion considered a gauge boson. I'm pretty sure I've come across a few interactions mediated by it.
  26. H

    C and P parity of gauge bosons - what are the values?

    Can somebody explain the parities of photons, W, Z and gluons? QFT says that bosons and antibosons have the same P parity. But the P parity of the gauge bosons is rarely given. Sometimes photons are said to have negative parity, while other say this is only the case for electric dipole...
  27. Q

    Coupling the gauge bosons to the Higgs scalars

    At page 52 of 4th chapter in "An Introduction to gauge theories & modern particle physics" by Leader & Predazzi one can find such statement: "We must therefore rearrange (4.2.4) so that we can identify the field that multiplies\frac{1}{2}\left(1+\tau_{3}\right) as gauge boson that remains...
  28. L

    Forces Mediated by Gauge Bosons: Valid Questions?

    Forces are mediated by gauge bosons. If, for instance, you look at a collision between 2 electrons, is there a definite/calculable number of photons exchanged? Do they have a particular frequency? Do we expect the same thing of gravitons? Does that mean the action of forces is quantized...
  29. P

    Gauge invariance and it's relation to gauge bosons

    Hello, I'm currently doing a project that is concerned with the hopeful discovery of the Higgs Boson at LHC. I'll be running some code that my supervisor has produced, but before that he wanted me to understand more of the physics that is behind the Higgs mechanism. He has proposed a...
  30. D

    Cross section for scattering of gauge bosons and Majorana neutrinos

    For my diploma thesis I must provide a calculation that reproduces the results given on page 46 of the paper hep-ph/0309342 . For those who do not want to look it up, I briefly explain what it is about: It concerns the two-body scattering processes (1) N + V => L + H, (2) N + L => V + H, (3) N...
  31. K

    Is Energy of Gauge Bosons matched by Binding Energy?

    Everytime a photon leaves an atom, the energy of that photon is matched by the increase in binding energy of that atom - right? If so would the change of energy in the form of radiation be equivalent to the change of binding energy? Is the aggregate binding energy of particles in the...
  32. E

    Why gauge bosons, but no gauge fermions

    Hello all, from Marlon's journal, I read the question "DO YOU KNOW WHY FORCE CARRIERS ARE ALWAYS BOSONS ? WHY DON'T WE HAVE GAUGE FERMIONS ?" Can anyone answer this question? :redface:
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