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Electron–positron pair production in the external electromagnetic field of colliding relativistic heavy ions

  • A. Aste
  • G. Baur
  • K. Hencken
  • D. Trautmann
  • G. Scharf
Theoretical physics

Abstract.

The results concerning the \(e^+e^-\) production in peripheral highly relativistic heavy-ion collisions presented in a recent paper by Baltz et al. are rederived in a very straightforward manner. It is shown that the solution of the Dirac equation directly leads to the multiplicity, i.e. to the total number of electron–positron pairs produced by the electromagnetic field of the ions, whereas the calculation of the single pair production probability is much more involved. A critical observation concerns the unsolved problem of seemingly absent Coulomb corrections (Bethe–Maximon corrections) in pair production cross sections. It is shown that neither the inclusion of the vacuum–vacuum amplitude nor the correct interpretation of the solution of the Dirac equation concerning the pair multiplicity is able the explain (from a fundamental point of view) the absence of Coulomb corrections. Therefore the contradiction has to be accounted to the treatment of the high energy limit.

Keywords

Electromagnetic Field Pair Production Dirac Equation Production Cross Section Straightforward Manner 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg / Società Italiana di Fisica 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Aste
    • 1
  • G. Baur
    • 2
  • K. Hencken
    • 1
  • D. Trautmann
    • 1
  • G. Scharf
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of Basel, Klingelbergstrasse 82, 4054 Basel, Switzerland CH
  2. 2.Institut für Kernphysik (Theorie), Forschungszentrum Jülich, 52425 Jülich, Germany DE
  3. 3.Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of Zürich, Winterthurerstrasse 190, 8057 Zürich, Switzerland CH

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