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dc.contributor.authorPhillips, Justin Danielen_US
dc.date.accessioned2015-08-07T03:21:46Z
dc.date.available2015-08-07T03:21:46Z
dc.date.issued2013en_US
dc.date.submitted2013en_US
dc.identifier.other(ALMA)contempen_US
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/2144/12832
dc.descriptionThesis (Ph. D.)--Boston University PLEASE NOTE: Boston University Libraries did not receive an Authorization To Manage form for this thesis or dissertation. It is therefore not openly accessible, though it may be available by request. If you are the author or principal advisor of this work and would like to request open access for it, please contact us at open-help@bu.edu. Thank you.en_US
dc.description.abstractThe MuSun experiment is designed to measure the rate of nuclear capture of muons on deuterium. This is accomplished at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), where we stop 4 MeV negative muons in an ultra-pure, cryogenic deuterium gas, and measure their disappearance rate using the resulting decay electrons. In particular, we employ the lifetime method, constructing our experiment such that the muons can either capture on a deuterium nucleus or freely decay in our target. The final result can then be obtained by finding the difference between our measured disappearance rate in deuterium and the free muon decay rate. The two best measurements of the capture rate were performed over twenty years ago, yielding results of 470±29 Hz and 409±40 Hz. Improving the precision of the measured capture rate (Ad) is of particular interest today. Various theoretical approaches predict Ad to be in the range of 380 Hz to 420 Hz, with many claiming uncertainties of only 1%. The relative error in the earlier experiments is nearly an order of magnitude larger, and the more precise of the two differs from these new calculations by over two standard deviations. The goal of MuSun is to measure Ad to 6 Hz, improving the overall experimental uncertainty to 1.5%. Besides helping to determine the validity of the techniques used in the new theory calculations, increasing the precision on the measurement of Ad immediately improves the accuracy on the strength of other related interactions, such as the first stage of solar fusion and neutrino scattering in the SNO experiment. While muon capture in heavier nuclei has been measured to greater precision, the level of uncertainty in theoretical calculations involving atoms with three or more nucleons is comparatively much greater. Muon capture on the deuteron provides a unique opportunity for the study of weak interactions in complex nuclei: readily measured in experiment and readily calculated in theory.en_US
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.publisherBoston Universityen_US
dc.titleMusun: measuring the rate of muon capture in dueteriumen_US
dc.typeThesis/Dissertationen_US
etd.degree.nameDoctor of Philosophyen_US
etd.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
etd.degree.disciplinePhysicsen_US
etd.degree.grantorBoston Universityen_US


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