The Gamow-Teller (GT) matrix element contributing to tritium β decay is calculated with trinucleon wavefunctions obtained from hyperspherical-harmonics solutions of the Schrödinger equation with the chiral two- and three-nucleon interactions including Delta intermediate states that have recently been constructed in configuration space. Predictions up to next-to-next-to-next-to-leading order (N3LO) in the chiral expansion of the axial current (with Delta’s) overestimate the empirical value by 1–4%. By exploiting the relation between the low-energy constant (LEC) in the contact three-nucleon interaction and two-body axial current, we provide new determinations of the LECs cD and cE that characterize this interaction by fitting the trinucleon binding energy and tritium GT matrix element. Some of the implications that the resulting models of three-nucleon interactions have on the spectra of light nuclei and the equation of state of neutron matter are briefly discussed. We also provide a partial analysis,which ignores Delta’s, of the contributions due to loop corrections in the axial current at next-to-next-to-next-to-next-to-leading order (N4LO). Finally, explicit expressions for the axial current up to N4LO have been derived in configuration space, which other researchers in the field may find useful.
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