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A remark about the meaning of the present paper's conclusion

In section 4 of this paper I show that the observed neutrinos - in the massless limit - are definitely of Weyl and not Majorana type. This conclusion only holds under the following two, widely used, assumptions:
A.the standard model quantitatively describes the weak interactions of the neutrino to good approximation
B. standard quantum field theory applies to good approximation for the description of the neutrino field
As discussed in section 5 my conclusion holds also if Weyl neutrinos have finite Majorana masses. This is why the present manuscript's claim is not as far reaching as it might first sound: all of the lepton-number violating phenomena connected with massive Majorana neutrinos, such as neutrino-less double beta decay and all Majorana mass related small-mass generating mechanisms proposed for them (such as the see-saw mechanism) remain viable for a Weyl neutrino with a Majorana mass term. On the other hand - because the term ``Majorana neutrino'' is precisely mathematically defined (section 2) - the manuscript's conclusion is nontrivial (it solves a longstanding question of neutrino physics) and potentially important in the development of new theories.


next up previous
Next: Outline of the paper Up: Introduction Previous: Introduction
Rainer Plaga 2001-08-03