One of the best ways to understand the structure of particles and the forces between them is to scatter them off each other. This is particularly true at the quantum level where the systems cannot be seen in the literal sense and must be probed by indirect means. The scattering process gives us information about the projectile, the target, and the forces between them. A natural way to proceed (when possible) is to consider cases where two of these are known and learn about the third. Consider, for example, experiments at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center in which high-energy photons were used to bombard static neutrons. The structure of the photon and its coupling to matter are well understood-the photon is a point particle to an excellent approximation and couples to electric charge in a way we have studied in some detail.
KeywordsAngular Momentum Wave Packet Differential Cross Section Hard Sphere Scattered Wave
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