, Volume 45, Issue 2, pp 291-305
Date: 05 Dec 2005

Colour reconnection in e+e → W+Wat \( {\sqrt s } \) =180–209 GeV

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The effects of the final state interaction phenomenon known as colour reconnection are investigated at centre-of-mass energies in the range \(\sqrt s\) ≃ 189–209 using the OPAL detector at LEP. Colour reconnection is expected to affect observables based on charged particles in hadronic decays of . Measurements of inclusive charged particle multiplicities, and of their angular distribution with respect to the four jet axes of the events, are used to test models of colour reconnection. The data are found to exclude extreme scenarios of the Sjöstrand-Khoze Type I () model and are compatible with other models, both with and without colour reconnection effects. In the context of the model, the best agreement with data is obtained for a reconnection probability of 37%. Assuming no colour reconnection, the charged particle multiplicity in hadronically decaying W bosons is measured to be \({\left\langle {n^{{{\text{qq}}}}_{{{\text{ch}}}} } \right\rangle }\) =19.38±0.05(stat.)±0.08(syst.).

Arrival of the final proofs: 28 November 2005