Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Do Electrons Oscillate?

Neutrino Oscillation is the theorectical explanation of the Solar Neutrino Problem. All attempts to measure the elusive neutrinos which should theorectically be produced by nuclear fusion in the sun came up short by a factor of three. The explanation is that neutrinos come in three flavors and they oscillate amongst the flavors while they travel.
The three flavors of neutrino correspond to the three flavors of electron, which include the muon and the tau - heavier, unstable particles otherwise very similar to the electron. So then shouldn't the different flavors of electron oscillate just like the neutrino flavors? The answer is they do, but it doesn't come up much in practice - see the post by Carlb in physics forums. Here's a previous blog post on the same topic: lepton oscillation.

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