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Muon capture

  1. Aug 23, 2015 #1


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    I have read that an ordinary muon capture happen with this equation below:
    μ + p -> n + vμ
    It looks the same as the electron capture
    e + p -> n + ve
    I don't understand why there isn't any additional energy in the system, although a muon has a greater mass.
    Also, why isn't there an additional electron neutrino, as muons decay to an electron, an electron neutrino and a muon neutrino?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 23, 2015 #2


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    There is additional energy and the muon neutrino will take away most of it.

    There is no muon decay involved. Both the electron and the muon emit a virtual W and get converted to a neutrino, the virtual W converts the proton to a neutron. Same process.
  4. Aug 24, 2015 #3

    Meir Achuz

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    The final state neutron and neutrino have more energy in muon capture than in electron capture. The muon does sometimes decay into an electron and its neutrino before it is captured. Then the capture doesn't happen.
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