# Compton Scattering and Inverse Compton Scattering

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• dansmith170
In summary: The multiphoton Breit–Wheeler process, also referred to as nonlinear Breit–Wheeler or strong field Breit–Wheeler in the literature, is the extension of the pure photon–photon Breit–Wheeler process when a high-energy probe photon decays into pairs propagating through an electromagnetic field (for example, a laser pulse).However - Manufacturing such a source, a gamma-ray laser, is still a technological challenge.
dansmith170
TL;DR Summary
General Equation
Hi,

Is there a more general equation than the Compton equation that allows one to determine whether an electron will Compton scatter or inverse Compton scatter? If so, where can I find it (or what is it?)

Thanks.

dansmith170 said:
Summary:: General Equation

Hi,

Is there a more general equation than the Compton equation that allows one to determine whether an electron will Compton scatter or inverse Compton scatter? If so, where can I find it (or what is it?)

Thanks.
You perhaps should have posted this under Special and General Relativity or Quantum Physics.

Thread moved. I figured high energy / particle / nuclear physics would be better.

As a quick answer, what you appear to be looking for is the probability that an electron will undergo Compton scattering. For that you need to start with the "cross section" for that process at whatever energy you're interested in.

Then you can compare it with the cross sections for other possible processes e.g. pair production, photoelectric effect, ...

If you tell us more about what you're trying to do, people can give more specific advice.

Last edited:
PeroK
jtbell said:
Thread moved. I figured high energy / particle / nuclear physics would be better.

As a quick answer, what you appear to be looking for is the probability that an electron will undergo Compton scattering. For that you need to start with the "cross section" for that process at whatever energy you're interested in.

Then you can compare it with the cross sections for other possible processes e.g. pair production, photoelectric effect, ...

If you tell us more about what you're trying to do, people can give more specific advice.
Thanks for moving the thread (I wasn't sure where exactly to put it). Big picture, I'm trying to come up with an equation that will allow me to figure out the number of electrons produced by the nonlinear Breit Wheeler process (and that process requires Inverse Compton Scattering as I understand it). And thanks for your response. Sounds the Klein-Nishina formula might be relevant.

dansmith170 said:
Thanks for moving the thread (I wasn't sure where exactly to put it). Big picture, I'm trying to come up with an equation that will allow me to figure out the number of electrons produced by the nonlinear Breit Wheeler process (and that process requires Inverse Compton Scattering as I understand it).
Inverse Compton scattering involves the scattering of low energy photons to high energies by ultrarelativistic electrons so that the photons gain and the electrons lose energy. That would most likely be a process in stellar atmospheres, but it could be induced in an electron (beam) accelerator colliding into a laser beam.

The Breit–Wheeler process or Breit–Wheeler pair production is a physical process in which a positronelectron pair is created from the collision of two photons. It is the simplest mechanism by which pure light can be potentially transformed into matter. The process can take the form γ γ′ → e+ e where γ and γ′ are two light quanta. Ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breit–Wheeler_process from G. Breit and John A. Wheeler (15 December 1934). "Collision of Two Light Quanta". Physical Review. 46 (12): 1087–1091. Bibcode:1934PhRv...46.1087B. doi:10.1103/PhysRev.46.1087
https://journals.aps.org/pr/abstract/10.1103/PhysRev.46.1087

So, usually two photons would produce one electron-positron pair, unless the energies are very high to produce more than one pair. I'm not aware of this done in practice, although the Wikipedia article describes some experimental efforts.

Then - The multiphoton Breit–Wheeler process, also referred to as nonlinear Breit–Wheeler or strong field Breit–Wheeler in the literature, is the extension of the pure photon–photon Breit–Wheeler process when a high-energy probe photon decays into pairs propagating through an electromagnetic field (for example, a laser pulse).

However - Manufacturing such a source, a gamma-ray laser, is still a technological challenge. No S***!This has to do with - https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/breit-wheeler-matter-production.1010438/ ?

Last edited:
vanhees71
Hi Astronuc, thanks for your reply and for the links. And yes, it's related to my earlier question about the mass production of electrons by means of Breit-Wheeler.

## 1. What is Compton Scattering?

Compton Scattering is a process in which a photon (usually an X-ray or gamma ray) interacts with a charged particle, such as an electron, and transfers some of its energy to the particle. This results in a change in the wavelength and direction of the photon.

## 2. How does Compton Scattering occur?

Compton Scattering occurs when a photon collides with an electron, causing the electron to recoil and the photon to lose energy. The scattered photon has a longer wavelength and a different direction compared to the original photon.

## 3. What is Inverse Compton Scattering?

Inverse Compton Scattering is the opposite process of Compton Scattering. It occurs when a charged particle, such as an electron, collides with a photon, transferring energy to the photon and resulting in a shorter wavelength and different direction for the scattered photon.

## 4. What are the applications of Compton Scattering and Inverse Compton Scattering?

Compton Scattering and Inverse Compton Scattering have various applications in fields such as astrophysics, medical imaging, and materials science. In astrophysics, they are used to study the properties of cosmic rays and to understand the structure of galaxies. In medical imaging, they are used to produce high-resolution images of the human body. In materials science, they are used to analyze the structure and composition of materials.

## 5. How are Compton Scattering and Inverse Compton Scattering related to each other?

Compton Scattering and Inverse Compton Scattering are related to each other through the conservation of energy and momentum. In both processes, a photon and a charged particle interact, resulting in a change in the energy and direction of the photon. The direction and energy change are opposite for Compton Scattering and Inverse Compton Scattering, making them inverse processes of each other.

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