Search for a scalar component in the weak interaction

Abstract : Weak interactions are described by the Standard Model which uses the basic assumption of a pure “V(ector)-A(xial vector)” character for the interaction. However, after more than half a century of model development and experimental testing of its fundamental ingredients, experimental limits for possible admixtures of scalar and/or tensor interactions are still as high as 7%. The WITCH project (Weak Interaction Trap for CHarged particles) at the isotope separator ISOLDE at CERN is trying to probe the structure of the weak interaction in specific low energy β–decays in order to look for possible scalar or tensor components or at least significantly improve the current experimental limits. This worldwide unique experimental setup consisting of a combination of two Penning ion traps and a retardation spectrometer allows to catch, trap and cool the radioactive nuclei provided by the ISOLDE separator, form a cooled and scattering-free radioactive source of β–decaying nuclei and let these nuclei decay at rest. The precise measurement of the shape of the energy spectrum of the recoiling nuclei, the shape of which is very sensitive to the character of the weak interaction, enables searching for a possible admixture of a scalar/tensor component in the dominant vector/axial vector mode. First online measurements with the isotope 35Ar were performed in 2011 and 2012. The current status of the experiment, the data analysis and results as well as extensive simulations will be presented and discussed.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, January 19, 2016 - 2:56:06 PM
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D. Zakoucky, P. Baczyk, G. Ban, M. Beck, M. Breitenfeldt, et al.. Search for a scalar component in the weak interaction. Conference on Advances in Radioactive Isotope Science (ARIS2014), Jun 2014, Tokyo, Japan. pp.030065, ⟨10.7566/JPSCP.6.030065⟩. ⟨in2p3-01258808⟩

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