Toward a resolution of the proton size puzzle

G. A. Miller, A. W. Thomas, J. D. Carroll, J. Rafelski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


We show that off-mass-shell effects arising from the internal structure of the proton provide a new proton polarization mechanism in the Lamb shift, proportional to the lepton mass to the fourth power. This effect is capable of resolving the current puzzle regarding the difference in the proton radius extracted from muonic compared with electronic hydrogen experiments. These off-mass-shell effects could be probed in several other experiments. A significant ambiguity appearing in dispersion relation evaluations of the proton polarizability contribution to the Lamb shift is noted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number020101
JournalPhysical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 16 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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