Lepton flavor and number conservation, and physics beyond the standard model

André De Gouvêa*, Petr Vogel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

128 Scopus citations


The physics responsible for neutrino masses and lepton mixing remains unknown. More experimental data are needed to constrain and guide possible generalizations of the standard model of particle physics, and reveal the mechanism behind nonzero neutrino masses. Here, the physics associated with searches for the violation of lepton-flavor conservation in charged-lepton processes and the violation of lepton-number conservation in nuclear physics processes is summarized. In the first part, several aspects of charged-lepton flavor violation are discussed, especially its sensitivity to new particles and interactions beyond the standard model of particle physics. The discussion concentrates mostly on rare processes involving muons and electrons. In the second part, the status of the conservation of total lepton number is discussed. The discussion here concentrates on current and future probes of this apparent law of Nature via searches for neutrinoless double beta decay, which is also the most sensitive probe of the potential Majorana nature of neutrinos.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)75-92
Number of pages18
JournalProgress in Particle and Nuclear Physics
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Lepton flavor violation
  • Lepton number violation
  • New phenomena

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics


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