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Strong vs Weak Decay

  1. Dec 14, 2013 #1
    I read in my textbook that a decay process involving the strong interaction has a very short lifetime (10^-23s) whereas a decay process involving the weak interaction has a longer lifetime (10^-10s). Why is this?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 14, 2013 #2
    That's because the weak interaction is weaker (hence the name)
  4. Dec 14, 2013 #3
    If you check a source like wikipedia on the strong and weak force, you'll find they atre involved in quite different action phenomena.....

    What is a 'decay process' involving the strong force?
  5. Dec 14, 2013 #4


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    For example, "www.oeaw.ac.at/smi/uploads/media/ETP-WS09-Lesson11.pdf‎" [Broken] mentions ∑0(1385) → Λ + π0 as a strong decay, taking place in 10-23 sec and mediated by a gluon.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
  6. Dec 14, 2013 #5
    Qualitatively, you may think that the weak force is weaker, so the system evolves more slowly, thus takes longer time to decay.
    Or, in other words, weaker force corresponds to lower energy process, i.e. the time evolution ##e^{-iEt}## is slow .
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