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Thoughts on realistic model of electon Zitterbewegung

  1. Jul 11, 2011 #1
    Thoughts on "realistic" model of electon Zitterbewegung

    Several researchers, for example David Hestenes, have a physical model of electron Zitterbewegung as a massless particle travelling at the velocity of light, c, around a circle of radius r.

    This is my take on what this might imply.

    Following de Broglie's conjecture, the orbital angular momentum of this massless particle is equal to hbar so we have:

    m_e c r = hbar

    m_e = hbar / c r

    where m_e is the total mass/energy of the electron.

    I understand that the Zitterbewegung frequency of the electron is:

    w = 2 m c^2 / hbar

    Following Hestenes' model above, the circular frequency w is given by:

    w = c / r

    Thus we find:

    m = hbar / 2 c r

    I was wondering if the above mass m can be pictured as representing the kinetic energy of the massless orbiting particle which makes up half the total mass/energy of the electron system.

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 11, 2011 #2
    Re: Thoughts on "realistic" model of electon Zitterbewegung

    So Hestenes hypothesizes that "circular motion", "radius" and "orbiting" have a meaning at the scale of an electron. What could be the experimental support for such an assumption ?

    When they worked together, J. A. Wheeler and R. P. Feynman took a quite opposite hypothesis, and showed that all the inertia of the electron (but alas not of the heavy ones, muon and tauon) came from the sum of advanced and retarded waves to and from the other electric charges. An external coupling.
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2011
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