Scientists on the outskirts of Chicago, in Wefound that the mass of a subatomic particle is not what it should be – a shocking discovery that could revolutionize physical and our understanding universe,
The measurement is the first conclusive result of an experiment that contradicts one of the most important and successful principles of modern physics.
The team found that the particle, known as the W boson, has a greater mass than previously estimated.
Project co-spokesperson Professor David Toback described the results as “shocking”.
This discovery could lead to the development of a new and more complete theory of how the universe works.
“If these results are proven by other experiments, the world will look different,” he tells BBC News. “There has to be a paradigm shift. Hope maybe this result will lead to breakdown.”
Scientists at the CDF (Fermilab Collider Detector) in the US state of Illinois found only a tiny difference in the mass of the W boson, which theory says it should be – just 0.1%.
But if this is confirmed by other experiments, the implications are much larger. The so-called Standard Model of particle physics has predicted the behavior and properties of subatomic particles for 50 years without any discrepancy. Until now.
The other CDF co-spokesperson, Professor Giorgio Chiarelli, from INFN Sezione di Pisa, in Italytells BBC News that when they saw the results, the research team could hardly believe it.
“No one was expecting it. We thought something was amiss.”
But the researchers painstakingly analyzed the results and tried to look for errors. And they didn’t find any.
The findings, published in the prestigious scientific journal Science, could be related to clues from other experiments at Fermilab and Large Hadron Collider, on the Swiss-French border. These as yet unconfirmed findings also suggest deviations from the Standard Model, possibly as a result of an as-yet undiscovered fifth power of nature at play.
Physicists have known for some time that the theory needs updating. The concept is not able to explain the presence of invisible material in space, which is called dark matter, nor the ever-accelerating expansion of the universe by a force called dark energy. Not even gravity.
Mitesh Patel of Imperial College London United Kingdomwho works at the LHC says he believes that, if the Fermilab result is proven, it could be the first of many new results capable of making the biggest difference to our understanding of the universe. Is. Einstein’s theory of relativitymore than a hundred years ago.
“Hopefully these cracks will turn into abyss and eventually we’ll see some spectacular signs that not only confirm that the Standard Model has fallen apart as a description of nature, but also provide a clue to help us understand it.” It also gives new direction to what we are. Seeing and what a new theory of physics looks like”.
“If this is true, there must be new particles and new forces to explain the way this data is consistent.”
But despite the enthusiasm, the physical community remains cautious. While the Fermilab result is by far the most accurate measurement of W boson mass, it is in contrast to two of the next most accurate measurements from two separate experiments, consistent with the Standard Model.
“This is going to annoy some people,” says Professor Ben Allanch, a theoretical physicist at the University of Cambridge England,
“We need to know what’s going on with the measurements. The fact that we have two other experiments that agree with each other and with the Standard Model and strongly disagree with this experiment, worries me. “
All eyes are now on the Large Hadron Collider, which is ready to resume its experiments after a three-year renovation. The hope is that these tests will provide results that will lay the groundwork for a more complete new theory of physics.
“Most scientists are going to be a little cautious,” says Patel.
“We’ve been through similar situations before and we’re disappointed, but we all secretly hope that this is what it really is, and that we’ll be the kind of change in the history books in our lifetime. Read about it, you can see it.”