1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Pion Decay to Muons and not Electrons

  1. Apr 13, 2009 #1
    Hello! I'm afraid I've asked this before, a while ago, but I still don't completely understand. It's not a homework question as such, but I thought this might be an appropriate place to put it.

    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    Why is it that pions decay via pi^+ --> mu^+ + antimuon neutrino 98% of the time and only to a positron and anti electron neutrino 2% of the time.

    3. The attempt at a solution

    I understand it is something to do with helicity (as neutrinos are not chiral, as they have mass) and something to do with a spin flip which is dependent on the mass, and since a muon has a larger mass, this is why it's favoured. But everyone I asked (even professors) seem to give a description that is a bit fuzzy.

    Any help would be appreciated a lot. :-)

  2. jcsd
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Can you offer guidance or do you also need help?
Draft saved Draft deleted