Concept

Klein–Nishina formula

Summary
In particle physics, the Klein–Nishina formula gives the differential cross section (i.e. the "likelihood" and angular distribution) of photons scattered from a single free electron, calculated in the lowest order of quantum electrodynamics. It was first derived in 1928 by Oskar Klein and Yoshio Nishina, constituting one of the first successful applications of the Dirac equation. The formula describes both the Thomson scattering of low energy photons (e.g. visible light) and the Compton scattering of high energy photons (e.g. x-rays and gamma-rays), showing that the total cross section and expected deflection angle decrease with increasing photon energy. Formula For an incident unpolarized photon of energy E_\gamma, the differential cross section is: : \frac{d\sigma}{d\Omega} = \frac{1}{2} r_e^2 \left(\frac{\lambda}{\lambda'}\right)^{2} \left[\frac{\lambda}{\lambda'} + \frac{\lambda'}{\lambda} - \sin^2(\theta)\right] where
  • r_e
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