Theory of QED radiative corrections to neutrino scattering at accelerator energies

Oleksandr Tomalak, Qing Chen, Richard J. Hill, Kevin S. McFarland, Clarence Wret

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Control over quantum electrodynamics (QED) radiative corrections is critical for precise determination of neutrino oscillation probabilities from observed (anti)neutrino detection rates. It is particularly important to understand any difference between such corrections for different flavors of (anti)neutrinos in charged-current interactions. We provide theoretical foundations for calculating these corrections. Using effective field theory, the corrections are shown to factorize into soft, collinear, and hard functions. The soft and collinear functions contain large logarithms in perturbation theory but are computable from QED. The hard function parametrizes hadronic structure but is free from large logarithms. Using a simple model for the hard function, we investigate the numerical impact of QED corrections in charged-current (anti)neutrino-nucleon elastic cross sections and cross-section ratios at GeV energies. We consider the implications of mass singularity theorems that govern the lepton-mass dependence of cross sections for sufficiently inclusive observables and demonstrate the cancellation of leading hadronic and nuclear corrections in phenomenologically relevant observables.

Original languageEnglish
Article number093006
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number9
StatePublished - Nov 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Kaushik Borah for an independent validation of antineutrino-proton cross-section expressions and Emanuele Mereghetti and Ryan Plestid for discussions. This work was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of High Energy Physics, under Grants No. DE-SC0019095 and No. DE-SC0008475. Fermilab is operated by Fermi Research Alliance, LLC under Contract No. DE-AC02-07CH11359 with the United States Department of Energy. O. T. acknowledges support by the Visiting Scholars Award Program of the Universities Research Association and thanks theory groups at Fermilab and Institute for Nuclear Physics at Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz for warm hospitality. O. T. is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy through the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). Los Alamos National Laboratory is operated by Triad National Security, LLC, for the National Nuclear Security Administration of U.S. Department of Energy (Contract No. 89233218CNA000001). This research is funded by LANL’s Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD/PRD) program under Project No. 20210968PRD4. Q. C. and O. T. acknowledge Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics Graduate Fellow program supported by the Heising-Simons Foundation, the Simons Foundation, and National Science Foundation Grant No. NSF PHY-1748958. R. J. H. acknowledges support from the Neutrino Theory Network at Fermilab during the early stages of this work. K. S. M. acknowledges support from a Fermilab Intensity Frontier Fellowship during the early stages of this work and from the University of Rochester’s Steven Chu Professorship in Physics. Feyncalc , LoopTools , Mathematica , and DataGraph were useful in this work.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 authors. Published by the American Physical Society.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics


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