The initial results of two experiments suggest that there may be something wrong with the fundamental way physicists think the universe works, which is confusing and thrilling the field of particle physics.
In two different long-term experiments in the United States and Europe, small particles called muons did not do what was expected of them. The confusing results – if proven to be correct – reveal big problems with normative book physicists describing and understanding how the universe works at the subatomic level.
“We think we can swim in a sea of background particles all the time when we are not directly detected,” Chris Polly, co-chief scientist at the Fermilab experiment, told a news conference. “There may be monsters we have never imagined coming out of the vacuum interacting with our muons, which gives them a window to watch.”
The Rule Book, also known as the Standard Model, was created about 50 years ago. Experiments over the decades have repeatedly confirmed the interpretations of its particles and the forces that create and govern the universe. Until now.
“New particles, new physics may be beyond our research,” said Alexei Petrov, a particle physicist at Wayne State University. “It’s buzzing.”
The United States Department of Energy’s Fermilap announced the results of a race outside of Chicago on Wednesday for $ 8.2 billion, with most people ho-hum physicists: the magnetic fields of the muons do not know what the standard model should be. It follows new results released last month from the European Center for Nuclear Research’s major hawthorn collision, which found a surprising proportion of particles after high-velocity collisions.
If confirmed, the U.S. results would be the largest discovery of particles in the bizarre world in nearly 10 years because the Higgs boson discovery is often referred to as the “God particle,” said Ida El-Katra of the University of Illinois. Who works in theoretical physics for the Fermilab experiment.
The point of the experiments, explains David Kapilon, a theoretical physicist at Johns Hopkins University, is to discover that “something funny is happening” in both particles and the empty space between them.
“Secrets do not live in matter. They live in something that appears to fill all of space and time. These are quantum fields,” Kaplan said. “We direct energy into the vacuum and see it coming out.”
Both sets of results include a strange, rapid particle called a muon. Muon is the heaviest relative to the electron orbiting the center of an atom. But the muon is not part of the atom, it is unstable and usually only lasts for two microseconds. After its discovery in cosmic rays in 1936, scientists were puzzled by a famous physicist who asked, “Who ordered it?” He asked.
“Physicists have been scratching their heads from the beginning,” said Gregiano Venanzoni, an experimental physicist at the Italian National Laboratory, who has been dubbed the Moon G-2, one of the best scientists in the U.S. Fermilab experiment.
The experiment sends muons around the magnetized path, which holds the particles for a long time so that researchers can see them closely. Preliminary results indicate that the magnetic “spiral” of the rabbits is 0.1% more discounted than the standard model predicts. It may not seem big, but for particle physicists it is huge – enough to improve current understanding.
It will take researchers another year or two to analyze the results of all the laps around the 50-foot (14 meters) path. If the results do not change, it will be considered a major breakthrough, Venon said.
Separately, in the world’s largest atomic crushing at CERN, physicists then crush protons on each other and then see what happens. One of the many separate tests of particle collisions refers to what happens when particles collide, called beauty or lower quarks.
The standard model predicts that these beauty quark failures will cause an equal number of electrons and muons. It’s like flipping a coin 1,000 times and getting an equal number of heads and tails, said Chris Parks, head of the Large Hadron Conflict Beauty Experiment.
But that is not what happened.
The researchers examined data from several years and a few thousand crashes and found a difference of 15%, said Shelton Stone, an experimental researcher at Syracuse University who has significantly more electrons than mions.
No experiment has yet been called an official discovery because there is still a small chance that the results will be statistical queries. The researchers said that running the experiments more often – as planned in both cases – could reach incredibly stringent statistical requirements in a year or two to appreciate physics as an invention.
Kapil said the results, if any, would elevate “every account made” in the world of particle physics.
“It simply came to our notice then. This is something that is wrong, ”said Kapil. Something can be explained by a new particle or force.
Or these results may be incorrect. In 2011, a strange discovery known that a particle called a neutrino traveled faster than light threatened the model, but this turned out to be the result of a loose electrical connection problem in the experiment.
“We tested all our cable connections and did everything we could to verify our data,” Stone said. “We’re kind of optimistic, but you never know.”
Jamie Keaton, an AP writer based in Geneva, contributed to the report.
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