Charmed and light pseudoscalar meson decay constants from four-flavor lattice QCD with physical light quarks

A. Bazavov, C. Bernard, J. Komijani, C. M. Bouchard, C. Detar, J. Foley, L. Levkova, D. Du, J. Laiho, A. X. El-Khadra, E. D. Freeland, E. Gámiz, Steven Gottlieb, U. M. Heller, J. Kim, D. Toussaint, A. S. Kronfeld, P. B. Mackenzie, J. N. Simone, R. S. Van De WaterR. Zhou, E. T. Neil, R. Sugar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We compute the leptonic decay constants fD+, fDs, and fK+ and the quark-mass ratios mc/ms and ms/ml in unquenched lattice QCD using the experimentally determined value of fπ+ for normalization. We use the MILC highly improved staggered quark ensembles with four dynamical quark flavors - up, down, strange, and charm - and with both physical and unphysical values of the light sea-quark masses. The use of physical pions removes the need for a chiral extrapolation, thereby eliminating a significant source of uncertainty in previous calculations. Four different lattice spacings ranging from a≈0.06 to 0.15 fm are included in the analysis to control the extrapolation to the continuum limit. Our primary results are fD+=212.6(0.4)(+1.0-1.2)MeV, fDs=249.0(0.3)(+1.1-1.5)MeV, and fDs/fD+=1.1712(10)(+29-32), where the errors are statistical and total systematic, respectively. The errors on our results for the charm decay constants and their ratio are approximately 2-4 times smaller than those of the most precise previous lattice calculations. We also obtain fK+/fπ+=1.1956(10)(+26-18), updating our previous result, and determine the quark-mass ratios ms/ml=27.35(5)(+10-7) and mc/ms=11.747(19)(+59-43). When combined with experimental measurements of the decay rates, our results lead to precise determinations of the Cabibbo-Kobayashi-Maskawa matrix elements |Vus|=0.22487(51)(29)(20)(5), |Vcd|=0.217(1)(5)(1) and |Vcs|=1.010(5)(18)(6), where the errors are from this calculation of the decay constants, the uncertainty in the experimental decay rates, structure-dependent electromagnetic corrections, and, in the case of |Vus|, the uncertainty in |Vud|, respectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number074509
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 30 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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