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Bremsstrahlung near the cutoff frequency, experimental data

  1. Mar 13, 2007 #1

    I would be interrested in experimental data regarding the Bremsstrahlung process near the quantum mechanical cutoff, possibly single events data.

    I thought that maybe something like a bubble chamber picture could illustrate this process. This is maybe a naïve dream but this would be the most convincing evidence about the quantum mechanical nature of this process: some pictures of individual events.

    Would it be possible to see somehow the single photon as well as the recoil of one atom in such a picture?

    In another dream I thought that maybe some individual electron experiments (I mean one electron at a time) could provide the same information.

    Any other experimental data useful to illustrate the quantum aspects of Bremsstrahlung could be of interrest.


  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 13, 2007 #2


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    I don't know exactly what are the energy scales you are talking about. But I see two problems: in order for the recoil to be detectable, you would need a certain minimum kinetic energy of the nucleus so that it produces a track of, say, at least a few 100 micrometers. I think it would need at least a few KeV of energy before it is detectable. Now, to have a few KeV of *recoil* energy, this means that the photon must be quite higher.
    Next, photons by themselves don't leave any trace in a detector. The only things that are detectable are photo-electric events (then, the photon is gone), or Compton events (the photon "survives" and an electron is emitted, and what is detectable is the emitted electron, not the photon itself.

    So I'm not sure exactly what kind of event you'd like to see.
  4. Mar 13, 2007 #3

    I am looking first to experimental data on the Bremsstrahlung as a single quantum event.
    This would be the most direct evidence about this process, but there is indeed little chances that such data are available for the reasons you explained.
    Other kind of data that would provide the same evidence would help me too, as long as the interpretation is not too much indirect.

    In summary, I would "simply" like to see a single Bremsstrahlung event.
    What about single-electron-impact experiments with photon coïncidence???
    What about bremsstrahlung in gases?
    Maybe some historical experiments?

    Any idea?


  5. Mar 13, 2007 #4

    Meir Achuz

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    Last edited: Mar 13, 2007
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