Regular Article - Theoretical Physics
Electron–positron annihilation into hadrons at the higher-loop levels
Bogoliubov Laboratory of Theoretical Physics, Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, Dubna, 141980, Russian Federation
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Accepted: 22 November 2017
Published online: 8 December 2017
The strong corrections to the R-ratio of electron–positron annihilation into hadrons are studied at the higher-loop levels. Specifically, the derivation of a general form of the commonly employed approximate expression for the R-ratio (which constitutes its truncated re-expansion at high energies) is delineated, the appearance of the pertinent -terms is expounded, and their basic features are examined. It is demonstrated that the validity range of such approximation is strictly limited to and that it converges rather slowly when the energy scale approaches this value. The spectral function required for the proper calculation of the R-ratio is explicitly derived and its properties at the higher-loop levels are studied. The developed method of calculation of the spectral function enables one to obtain the explicit expression for the latter at an arbitrary loop level. By making use of the derived spectral function the proper expression for the R-ratio is calculated up to the five-loop level and its properties are examined. It is shown that the loop convergence of the proper expression for the R-ratio is better than that of its commonly employed approximation. The impact of the omitted higher-order -terms on the latter is also discussed.
© The Author(s), 2017