‘Sphericity’ of the Proton

  • #1
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Main Question or Discussion Point

As I understand, the sphericity or regularity of the electron’s negative charge was tested to exquisite degrees of accuracy by the ACME collaboration in 2013.

If possible, would a measure of the sphericity of the proton’s positive charge be expected to yield similar results?

And regarding the electron, if its sphericity was lower, say, by a couple of orders of magnitude, what implications would that have for particle/atomic physics? Would there be any implications for the manner in which electrons pair to nuclei?


IH
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
204
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The spherical symmetry of the electric field and charge distribution on a proton would change with scale, as protons are composite (made of 3 quarks).
By scale, I mean how far you can "zoom in" on the proton. If you aren't very zoomed in, it will look symmetric. If you are very zoomed in, you will see 3 points of charge.
 
  • #3
12,689
9,232
The spherical symmetry of the electric field and charge distribution on a proton would change with scale, as protons are composite (made of 3 quarks).
By scale, I mean how far you can "zoom in" on the proton. If you aren't very zoomed in, it will look symmetric. If you are very zoomed in, you will see 3 points of charge.
No you won't, as it is not a static situation. There is a constant interchange among them.
 
  • #4
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A proton is static, but it doesn't have unique positions for its constituents.
 

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