Perturbative expansion of τ hadronic spectral function moments and α s extractions

Martin Beneke, Diogo Boito, Matthias Jamin

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Various moments of the hadronic spectral functions have been employed in the determination of the strong coupling α s from tau decays. In this work we study the behaviour of their perturbative series under different assumptions for the large-order behaviour of the Adler function, extending previous work on the tau hadronic width. We find that the moments can be divided into a small number of classes, whose characteristics depend only on generic features of the moment weight function and Adler function series. Some moments that are commonly employed in α s analyses from τ decays should be avoided because of their perturbative instability. This conclusion is corroborated by a simplified α s extraction from individual moments. Furthermore, under reasonable assumptions for the higher-order behaviour of the perturbative series, fixed-order perturbation theory (FOPT) provides the preferred framework for the renormalization group improvement of all moments that show good perturbative behaviour. Finally, we provide further evidence for the plausibility of the description of the Adler function in terms of a small number of leading renormalon singularities.

Original languageEnglish
Article number125
JournalJournal of High Energy Physics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2013


  • QCD
  • Renormalization Group
  • Renormalization Regularization and Renormalons


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