Skip to comments.At Particle Lab, a Tantalizing Glimpse Has Physicists Holding Their Breaths
Posted on 04/10/2011 6:32:18 PM PDT by neverdem
Physicists at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory are planning to announce Wednesday that they have found a suspicious bump in their data that could be evidence of a new elementary particle or even, some say, a new force of nature.
The results, if they hold up, could be a spectacular last hurrah for Fermilabs Tevatron, once the worlds most powerful particle accelerator and now slated to go dark forever in September or earlier, whenever Fermilab runs out of money to operate it.
Nobody knows what this is, said Christopher Hill, a theorist at Fermilab who was not part of the team. If it is real, it would be the most significant discovery in physics in half a century.
One possible explanation for this mysterious bump, scientists say, is that it is evidence of a new and unexpected version of the long-sought Higgs boson. This is a hypothetical elementary particle that, according to the reigning theory known as the Standard Model, is responsible for endowing other elementary particles with mass.
Another explanation might be that it is evidence of a new force of nature in addition to gravity, electromagnetism, and the strong and weak nuclear forces we already know and are baffled by that would manifest itself only at very short distances like those that rule inside the atomic nucleus.
Either could shake what has passed for conventional wisdom in physics for the last few decades. Or it could be there is something they do not understand about so-called regular physics.
Giovanni Punzi, the Fermilab physicist who is spokesman for the international team that did the work, said by e-mail that he and his colleagues were strongly thrilled at the possibility, and cautious at the same time, because this would be so important that almost scares us so...
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
Could be a we need more funding bump.
I think the most probable “explanation for this mysterious bump” is that “once the worlds most powerful particle accelerator and now slated to go dark forever in September or earlier, whenever Fermilab runs out of money to operate it.” and they need a publicity stunt to look for donors.
We have a winner!!
FReepmail me if you want on or off my health and science ping list.
They've discovered Governmentium. Again.
Morons. The only matter in existence that increases in mass as it decays.
Maybe.Still the Standard model is looking more and more like the Ptolemaic astronomical model which kept getting more and more complicated. Then Copernicus proposed a new(old) heliocentric model.Beginning with Kepler’s new measurements, which showed that
the heliocentric model fit the data about as well, and the addition of new stuff by Galileo, new math models and the work of Newton. Out goes Ptolemy. The question is, OK, who is the Copernicus of atomic theory?
'Sounds like a Punzi scheme to me....
I’m still waiting for confirmation that 2 Princeton physicists claimed was a particle they were able to accelerate that was faster than light-this was several years ago. BTW-how would you ever prove something is faster than light?
I have long believed there is a kind of a massless particle that carries momentum at sub-speed of light velocities.
And the sum total of that momentum, divided by C, is the dark-matter side of the universe.
Fermi Lab is about 25 minutes from me.....a huge complex in a suburban Chicago campus/park setting with deer running around the wooded part of the vast acreage.
The Lab has money to operate till September. A request was put in to the feds for $100 million to keep the Tevatron running for three more years.....but the request was denied by the Department of Energy.
The Lab hope to reassign the major employees but lots of the more peripheral ones will lose their jobs....and the merchants and businesses in the adjacent town of Batavia will take a big hit.
>> “Could be a we need more funding bump.” <<
It arrived before it left?
Look for it yesterday.
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