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Further evidence for low-energy protonium production in vacuum / E. Lodi Rizzini, L Venturelli, N Zurlo, M Charlton, C Amsler, G Bonomi, C Canali, C Carraro, A Fontana, P Genova, R Hayano, L. V Jørgensen, A Kellerbauer, V Lagomarsino, R Landua, M Macrí, G Manuzio, P Montagna, C Regenfus, A Rotondi, G Testera, A Variola, D. P Werf, Michael Charlton, Dirk van der Werf
The European Physical Journal Plus, Volume: 127, Issue: 10
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We describe an experiment performed in the ATHENA apparatus in which there is evidence that the antiproton-proton bound state, protonium, has been produced at very low energies in vacuum following the interaction of cold antiprotons with a trapped cloud of molecular hydrogen ions. The latter were co...
|Published in:||The European Physical Journal Plus|
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We describe an experiment performed in the ATHENA apparatus in which there is evidence that the antiproton-proton bound state, protonium, has been produced at very low energies in vacuum following the interaction of cold antiprotons with a trapped cloud of molecular hydrogen ions. The latter were confined in a centrifugally separated belt outside a positron plasma used for antihydrogen formation. Studies have been performed at low positron plasma temperatures in which the protonium annihilation signal has been identified along with that from antihydrogen, and we discuss how their contributions can be disentangled. With the positron plasma heated to around 10000K the ions become distributed in the positrons, and the majority of the annihilation signal can be explained in terms of protonium formation, as antihydrogen creation is heavily suppressed. In this case we compare the observed protonium formation ratewith expectations from theory and find reasonable accord, when experimental systematics are taken into account. The effect on the annihilation signals of the passage of an electron current through a pre-loaded positron plasma has been studied in detail, and the results are presented here for the first time.
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