Scientists discovered a new particle by using the Large Hadron Collider in Europe. The huge machine used for atom-smashing stumbled upon a new particle called pentaquark. The recent discovery may help better understand how the regular matter has been established.
Scientists have been looking for the pentaquark for around 50 years, a search that has been marked by numerous claims of its discovery that turned out to be false. However, the scientists at the Large Hadron Collider claim that they established the particle’s existence with an incredibly high level of confidence.
Guy Wilkinson, a physicist from the Oxford University and a spokesman at the European Organization for Nuclear Research, otherwise known as CERN said that they made many checks to make sure there is no other explanation possible for the discovery.
Murray Gell-Mann, an American physicist showed more than 50 years ago that every neutron and proton is composed out of the combinations of three particles called quarks. Gell-Mann won the Nobel Prize as result of his incredible study. On top of this, the physicist said that it should be possible to obtain matter from five of these quarks too.
His research and statement triggered a hunt for this pentaquark. Researchers in Japan claimed in 2003 that they have seen this particle and just after a few months later, numerous others claimed this as well. However, all these claims have been declared as being false later.
Four scientists were analyzing the results of the collisions of particles at the Large Hadron Collider between the years 2011 and 2012 and they bumped into a piece of information. In one of the readings a large spike was present. While this was possibly the pentaquark, the scientists were cautious.
Sheldon Stone, a physics professor at the Syracuse University and a member of the LHC team said that because the pentaquark had such an infamous reputation, the scientists didn’t take this possibility very seriously.
However, the team of researchers carried on with their investigation and six months later they came to the conclusion that it was indeed the pentaquark. This discovery will help better understand the strong nuclear force. This force is one of the basic forces found in nature, the other being the weak nuclear force, the electromagnetic force and gravity. The strong force’s main job is to keep together neutrons and protons in order to make up atoms. And, as we all know it, atom is the basis of all the matter in the Universe.
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