Formation of the muonic helium atom

P. A. Souder, T. W. Crane, V. W. Hughes, D. C. Lu, H. Orth, H. W. Reist, M. H. Yam, G. Zu Putlitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


A full description is given of an experiment in which the muonic helium atom, He4μ-e-, was first observed. The method of the experiment was to study the precession of the magnetic moment of negative muons stopped in 14-atm helium with a 2% Xe admixture. A signal at the characteristic Larmor frequency of the atom was observed with an amplitude which corresponds to a muon residual polarization of 5.0±0.7%. In pure helium at 14 atm, precession characteristic of free muons with a polarization of 5.8±1.3% was found. The hyperfine structure of He4μ-e- and the various processes involved in the formation of this atom are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-50
Number of pages18
JournalPhysical Review A
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1980
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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