Weak transitions in A=6 and 7 nuclei

Phys. Rev. C 65, 054302 – Published 17 April 2002
R. Schiavilla and R. B. Wiringa


The 6He β decay and 7Be electron capture processes are studied using variational Monte Carlo wave functions, derived from a realistic Hamiltonian consisting of the Argonne v18 two-nucleon and Urbana-IX three-nucleon interactions. The model for the nuclear weak axial current includes one- and two-body operators with the strength of the leading two-body term—associated with Δ-isobar excitation of the nucleon—adjusted to reproduce the Gamow-Teller matrix element in tritium β decay. The measured half-life of 6He is underpredicted by theory by 8%, while that of 7Be for decay into the ground and first excited states of 7Li is overpredicted by 9%. However, the experimentally known branching ratio for these latter processes is in good agreement with the calculated value. Two-body axial current contributions lead to a 1.7% (4.4%) increase in the value of the Gamow-Teller matrix element of 6He (7Be), obtained with one-body currents only, and slightly worsen (appreciably improve) the agreement between the calculated and measured half-life. Corrections due to retardation effects associated with the finite lepton momentum transfers involved in the decays, as well as contributions of suppressed transitions induced by the weak vector charge and axial current operators, have also been calculated and found to be negligible.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevC.65.054302

  • Received 27 January 2002
  • Published 17 April 2002

© 2002 The American Physical Society

Authors & Affiliations

R. Schiavilla

  • Jefferson Lab, Newport News, Virginia 23606
  • Department of Physics, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia 23529

R. B. Wiringa

  • Physics Division, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, Illinois 60439

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