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## Main Question or Discussion Point

**Can someone *please* explain what a "differential (scattering) cross-section" is?**

I've tried and tried and tried to wrap my head around what this really

**is**, and to develop some physical intuition about it, but I just can't do it. Can someone please explain what the "differential cross-section," or "scattering cross-section," or "differential scattering cross-section" is? It's usually abbreviated in textbooks by [itex]\frac{d\sigma}{d\Omega}[/itex]. What the hell does it

**TELL**us about the physical situation we're considering? Why does it really

**MATTER**?

Thanks!