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Isotropic Decay

  1. Oct 19, 2009 #1
    I am trying to solve a problem from Jackson's and it says that the decay in particle's rest frame is more or less isotropic. I was wondering if somebody could help me figure the meaning of an 'isotropic decay' here.

    Thank you in advance.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 19, 2009 #2
    Isotropic means all directions are equally likely.
  4. Oct 19, 2009 #3
    I knew that sense of the term, but that meaning doesnt really help solving the this problem.
  5. Oct 19, 2009 #4
    I think it should mean of the following:
    1- the magnitude of spatial momenta is almost the same for all decay products,
    2- the magnitude of temporal momenta (energy) is almost the same for all decay products.

    But I cant figure out which description is actually meant just from the look of the problem.
  6. Oct 19, 2009 #5

    Vanadium 50

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    You are talking about magnitudes. As hamster says, the word refers to directions.
  7. Oct 21, 2009 #6
    The definition as I heard from the instructor is as follows:

    A decay is isotropic if it is so in the Center of Mass frame; in the sense that the decay products come out in all angles with the same probability (but of course with fixed relative angles between them imposed by momentum conservation).
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