An Introductory Course of Particle Physics: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

An Introductory Course of Particle Physics

1st Edition

By Palash B. Pal

CRC Press

816 pages | 121 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2014-07-29
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For graduate students unfamiliar with particle physics, An Introductory Course of Particle Physics teaches the basic techniques and fundamental theories related to the subject. It gives students the competence to work out various properties of fundamental particles, such as scattering cross-section and lifetime. The book also gives a lucid summary of the main ideas involved.

In giving students a taste of fundamental interactions among elementary particles, the author does not assume any prior knowledge of quantum field theory. He presents a brief introduction that supplies students with the necessary tools without seriously getting into the nitty-gritty of quantum field theory, and then explores advanced topics in detail. The book then discusses group theory, and in this case the author assumes that students are familiar with the basic definitions and properties of a group, and even SU(2) and its representations. With this foundation established, he goes on to discuss representations of continuous groups bigger than SU(2) in detail.

The material is presented at a level that M.Sc. and Ph.D. students can understand, with exercises throughout the text at points at which performing the exercises would be most beneficial. Anyone teaching a one-semester course will probably have to choose from the topics covered, because this text also contains advanced material that might not be covered within a semester due to lack of time. Thus it provides the teaching tool with the flexibility to customize the course to suit your needs.


"… a pedagogical, thorough, and enjoyable introduction to this fascinating subject. … a carefully written textbook on the Standard Model in the post-LHC era, at the level of a graduate-level course. … Theorists and phenomenologists with an interest in particle physics would also do well to acquire a copy. … The biggest strength of this book is its pedagogical clarity. … Apart from the pedagogical value for novices, the later chapters of the book are interesting for active high-energy physicists as well … as a textbook, Palash Pal’s tome on particle physics is accessibly written for serious beginning students, and is a great addition to the bookshelves of seasoned scientists interested in the phenomenological foundations of the Standard Model."

Current Science, April 2015

Table of Contents

Scope of Particle Physics

What are elementary particles?

Inventory of Elementary Fermions

Which Properties?

Fundamental Interactions

High Energy Physics

Relativity and Quantum Theory

Natural Units

Plan of the book

Relativistic Kinematics

Lorentz Transformation Equations

Vectors and Tensors on Spacetime

Velocity, Momentum and Energy


Invariances and Conservation Laws

Kinematics of Decays

Kinematics of Scattering Processes

Symmetries and Groups

The Role of Symmetries

Group Theory

Examples and Classification



Lorentz Group

Poincaré Group

A brisk Tour of Quantum Field Theory

Motivating quantum fields

Plane wave solutions


Making Lorentz Invariants with Fields

Lagrangians for Free Fields

Noether Currents and Charges

Quantum Fields as Operators



From Lagrangian to Feynman rules

Calculation of Decay Rates

Calculation of Cross-Sections

Differential Decay Rates and Cross-Sections

Feynman Diagrams Which Do Not Represent Physical Amplitudes

Quantum Electrodynamics

Gauge Invariance

Interaction Vertex

Elastic Scattering at Second Order

Inelastic Scattering at Second Order

Scalar QED

Multi-Photon States

Higher Order Effects

Parity and Charge Conjugation

Discrete Symmetries in Classical Electrodynamics

Parity Transformation of Fields

Charge Conjugation

Parity Properties of Particle States

Charge Conjugation Properties of Particle States

Multi-Photon States


Parity Assignment of Different Particles

Signature of Parity Violation

Consequences of Charge Conjugation Symmetry

CP Symmetry

Time-Reversal and CPT Symmetries

Anti-Unitary Operators

Time Reversal Transformation on Fields

CPT Transformation on Fields

CPT Theorem

Consequences of CPT Symmetry

Time Reversal Transformation on States

Signature of Time Reversal Violation


Nuclear Energy Levels

Isospin Symmetry


Isospin Relations


Generalized Pauli Principle

Isospin and Quarks

Pion-Nucleon Interaction

Isospin breaking

Baryon Number

Discovering Particles

Discoveries of Electron, Proton and Neutron

New Particles in Cosmic Rays



Hadronic Zoo

Detecting Short-Lived Particles

Discovering Leptons

Overview of Particle Physics Experiments

SU(3) quark model

Strange quark



Mesons from three flavors of quarks

Baryons from three flavors of quarks

U-spin and V -spin

SU(3) breaking and mass relations

Electromagnetic properties in SU(3)

Decays of hadrons

Summary of conservation laws


Non-Abelian Gauge Theories

Local SU(N) invariance

Gauge fields

Self-interaction of gauge bosons

Fadeev–Popov ghosts

Interaction of gauge bosons with other particles

Quantum Chromodynamics

SU(3) of Color

Running Parameters

QCD Lagrangian

Perturbative QCD

The 1/N expansion

Lattice Gauge Theory


Asymptotic Properties of Color Gauge Fields

Structure of hadrons

Electron-Proton Elastic Scattering

Deep Inelastic Scattering

Structure Functions and Charge Distribution



Parton Distribution Functions

Parton Distribution and Cross-Section


Scale Dependence of Parton Distribution

Quark Masses


Fermi Theory of Weak Interactions

Four-Fermion Interaction

Helicity and Chirality

Fierz Transformations

Elastic Neutrino-Electron Scattering

Inelastic Neutrino-Electron Scattering

Muon and Tau Decay

Parity Violation

Problems with Fermi Theory

Intermediate Vector Bosons

Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking

Examples of Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking

Goldstone Theorem

Interaction of Goldstone Bosons

Higgs Mechanism

Standard Electroweak Model with Leptons

Chiral Fermions and Internal Symmetries

Leptons and the Gauge Group

Symmetry Breaking

Gauge Interaction of Fermions

Yukawa Sector

Connection with Fermi Theory

Forward-Backward Asymmetry

Electroweak Interaction of Hadrons

Quarks in Standard Model

Gauge Interaction of Quarks

CKM Matrix and Its Parametrization

Yukawa Interaction of quarks

Leptonic decays of Mesons

Spin and Parity of Hadronic Currents

Selection Rules for Charged Currents

Semileptonic Decays of Mesons

Neutral Kaons

Processes Involving Baryons

Global symmetries of standard model

Accidental symmetries

Approximate symmetries

Chiral symmetries


Bosons of Standard Model

Interactions among Bosons

Decay of Gauge Bosons

Scattering of Gauge Bosons

Equivalence Theorem

Custodial Symmetry

Loop Corrections

Higgs Boson

Hadrons Involving Heavy Quark Flavors

Charm Quark and Charmed Hadrons

Bottom Quark

Neutral Meson-Antimeson Systems

Top Quark

Quark Masses

Heavy Quark Effective Theory

CP Violation

CP Violation and Complex Parameters

Kobayashi-Maskawa Theory of CP Violation

Rephasing Invariant Formulation

CP-Violating Decays of Kaons

Other Signals of CP Violation

Unitarity Triangle

CP Violation and T Violation

Strong CP Problem

Neutrino Mass and Lepton Mixing

Simple Extension of Standard Model

Neutrino Oscillation

Majorana Fermions

Consequences of Lepton Mixing

Lepton Number Violation

Models of Neutrino Mass

Beyond the Standard Model

Shortcomings of Standard Model

Left-Right Symmetric Model

Grand Unified Theories

Horizontal Symmetry


Higher Dimensional Theories

String Theory


A Units and Constants

B Short summary of particle properties

C Timeline of major advances in particle physics

D Properties of spacetime

E Clebsch-Gordan co-efficients

F Dirac matrices and spinors

G Evaluation of loop integrals

H Feynman rules for standard model

I Books and other reviews

J Answers to selected exercises


Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SCIENCE / Nuclear Physics
SCIENCE / Physics