Researchers at the National Fermi or Fermilab Accelerator Laboratory in Illinois have found new evidence that a subatomic particle called a muon does not follow known laws of physics because New York Times reports.
Muons are very similar to electrons, but 207 times more massive. They also tend to decay extremely quickly into electrons and ultralight particles called neutrinos.
Exposed to an intense magnetic field sent around a 46-foot magnetized ring to Fermilab, the team found that the muons were swaying in completely unpredictable ways that were not expected at all, amazing researchers.
According to the Standard Model, the fundamental theory of particle interaction established in the second half of the 20th century, these motions can usually be measured and predicted in exceptional detail.
This is a turning point for the field of quantum physics. If confirmed, the results of the Fermilab experiments could rewrite the way we understand the basic laws governing physics ̵
“This amount we are measuring reflects the muon’s interactions with everything else in the universe,” said Rene Fatemi, a physicist at the University of Kentucky and leader of the experiment, in an official statement. “But when theorists calculate the same amount using all known forces and particles in the Standard Model, we don’t get the same answer.”
“This is strong evidence that the muon is sensitive to something that is not in our best theory,” added Fatemi.
This leaves the big question: what force of nature actually makes the muon sway? Researchers suggest that these may be sources of matter and energy that have yet to be understood and not explained by the Standard Model – in other words, a fifth major force of nature that would be added to gravity, electromagnetism, and strong and weak interactions between nuclei.
The new experiments set out in a series of papers presented in the journal Physical examination letters, confirm previous results found during experiments at Brookhaven National Laboratory in 2001.
“After 20 years since the end of the Brookhaven experiment, it’s so nice to finally solve this mystery,” said Fermilab scientist Chris Polly, who worked on both experiments.
There is still a chance that Fermilab’s new measurements will be wrong: one in 40,000, which means that scientists still can’t officially claim it as a discovery by physical standards, such as Times points out.
Polly added that so far only less than six percent of the data collected from Fermilab’s experiments have been analyzed. “Although these first results tell us that there is an intriguing difference with the standard model, we will learn much more in the next few years,” he said.
Still, physicists around the world are excited. “Clearly, this is very exciting because it potentially points to the future with new laws of physics, new particles and new force that we have not seen before,” said University of Manchester researcher and British experiment leader Mark Lancaster. BBC.
Cambridge University researcher Ben Alanah, who did not participate in the experiments, hopes that the results will eventually be verified. “My feeling for Spidey tingles and tells me it’s going to be real,” he told British television.
READ MORE: The finding from the study of particles can violate the known laws of physics[[[[New York Times]
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