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I Screening in QED

  1. Nov 4, 2016 #1
    Hello! I read today about the screening in QED and vacuum polarization. And the image they used to explain it was an electron surrounded by a ring of positrons and then by a ring of electron, which makes sense. Now, the Gauss's law outside and inside the 2 rings will give the same result, as the charge inside a sphere centered on the electron will enclose just the charge of the electron as the positron and electron rings will cancel each other, when the sphere is outside them. So for a particle outside or inside the 2 rings, the electric field (times the distance to the electron squared) it feels is the same. So I am not sure I understand why the charge outside the 2 rings seems to be smaller than inside them. Thank you!
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 4, 2016 #2


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    Such images are purely heuristic and does not carry any actual information or are representative of what is going on.
  4. Nov 4, 2016 #3
    So how should I think about it?
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