Positrons in atomic physics

  • J. W. Humberston
Conference paper
Part of the Few-Body Systems book series (FEWBODY, volume 10)


Comparisons of positron and electron scattering from atoms provide important insights into collision processes, particularly at low energies where the differences between the results for the two projectiles are most pronounced. Also, there are two processes in positron collisions that have no counterpart in electron collisions, namely positronium formation and electron-positron annihilation.

Recent advances in experimental positron physics now enable detailed comparisons to be made between experimental measurements and theoretical predictions for a variety of scattering and annihilation parameters, providing important tests of the accuracy of the experimental measurements. After discussing the basic features of positron-atom scattering, an account is given of some accurate theoretical results which have recently been obtained for annihilation and positronium formation in hydrogen and helium. Comparisons with available experimental data are made where possible.


Annihilation Cross Section Alkali Atom Positronium Formation Elastic Scattering Cross Section Positron Scattering 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. W. Humberston
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physics and AstronomyUniversity College LondonUK

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