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Journal Article

Highest energy proton-nucleus cross sections


Stodolsky,  L.
Max Planck Institute for Physics, Max Planck Society and Cooperation Partners;

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Stodolsky, L. (2018). Highest energy proton-nucleus cross sections. Modern Physics Letters A, (33), 1850242. Retrieved from https://publications.mppmu.mpg.de/?action=search&mpi=MPP-2018-193.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-F901-3
The description of very high energy proton-proton cross sections in terms of a `black disc' with an `edge' allows of a simple generalization to highest energy proton-nucleus cross sections. This results in a leading $ln^2W$ term and a $ln\, W$ term whose coefficient depends linearly on the radius of the nucleus ($W$ the c.m. energy). The necessary parameters are determined from the fits to p-p data. Since the coefficient of the $ln W$ term is rather large, it is doubtful that the regime of $ln^2W$ dominance can be reached with available energies in accelerators or cosmic rays. However, the $ln W$ term can be relevant for highest energy cosmic rays in the atmosphere, where a large increase for the cross section on nitrogen is expected. Tests of the theory should be possible by studying the coefficient of $ln W$ at p-nucleus colliders.