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I Off-shell on-shell

  1. Dec 14, 2016 #1
    Here they say that if you add two momentum vectors of two on-shell particles, you get an off-shell particle.

    Two questions:

    1. Since on-shell solutions are solutions to the free equation of motion, should no adding two solutions also give a solution?

    2. Why should adding two on-shell particles represent an interaction?

    thank you
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 14, 2016 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Not necessarily (you can produce a heavier particle if the energy matches), but this is a typical result.
    The opposite direction: If they interact to form a new particle, then you have to add the momenta. There are other interactions where the sum of momenta is irrelevant.
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