The New Physics That Could Change Everything
Selina Hajarat medium.com
Apr 22 2021· 4 min read
Social media is packed with news about this unknown, new particle that has emerged in Physics. There is a 90% chance that someone has already stumbled upon someone talking about this new physics or a post stating the discovery of a new particle related to the particle known as a Muon. With the outspread on social media, we often get lost in our loopholes, a sea of false information. What might be the significance of this potential discovery? This could change the laws of physics as we know it, as Muons are an essential and quite substantial part of the cosmos. The impact of such a discovery could change our existing theories regarding the matter in outer space and potentially the much-debated Big Bang Theory.
How did it happen?
The announcement was made at the beginning of April 2021, after a wait of 20 years to finalize the results. With the results unleashed, a tantalizing hole has been created in the understanding of our world. The first experiment to note the possibility of this new particle existing occurred in 2001 at the Brookhaven National Lab. However, the observation was puzzling and threw off the scientists, making them headstrong on repeating the experiment with much more precision.
Different scientists dispersed across several countries have been working on this experiment. The results suggest that a form of matter, yet unknown to humankind, exists and is vital to the evolution of the cosmos. The finalization and announcement came from the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, where the world-known experiment known as Muon g-2 has been conducted. Physicists placed the ring in which the experiment took place at minus 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
The Muon g-2 ring, at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia — via U.S. Department of Energy
As Graziano Venanzoni, a leader of the experiment and a physicist from the Italian National Institue for Nuclear Physics, outlines the importance of the experiment by saying:
“An extraordinary day, long-awaited not only by us but by the whole international physics community.”
What is the new particle exactly?
The exact nature and behavior of the particle are still unknown. The particle’s existence is still uncertain, but we know that something seems to interact with the Muons. One might think, “Well, why did it take them 20 years to just tell us an unknown particle exists?” Well, science is never that simple. In our lifetime, we now have 17 different fundamental particles. Despite not being fully understood, one more could chance numerous equations and how these particles interact with one another. Of course, the behavior would not change, but to us, it would. We would have a more in-depth insight into the world around us and take one step closer towards achieving a unified theory.
The team of physicists has observed that a particle known as a Muon, a heavier particle than electrons, was experiencing bizarre behavior — unpredicted movements in the presence of a magnetic field. Muons are naturally present in abundance in the universe, manifesting when cosmic rays strike Earth’s atmosphere. In the Fermilab, they have been produced in large numbers to perform meticulous experiments on them. When put in a strong magnetic field, the Muon is supposed to wobble along the axis. However, the experiment shows that the Muon wobbles much more than anticipated — inconsistent with the theoretical calculations of the Standard Model. The standard Model is a fundamental theory of physics that describes the behavior and nature of subatomic particles.
What does it all mean?
There is a chance this might all be an illusion — simply an anomaly. However, the chances of that happening are one in 40,000. Even if one has doubts, as many promising signs in physics become anomalies, the data we have only comprised 6% of the results expected to surface in the upcoming years. The research, studies, experiments, and papers regarding this bizarre Muon interaction have not yet been finalized. However, we now know that the Muon is much more magnetic than we previously thought.
The wondrous discovery might accompany much more incredible, more significant breakthroughs than the Higgs Boson Discovery of 2012. This behavior might be the much-needed key to finding out what exactly dark matter is, which has been established to make up one-quarter of the universe’s mass. Some scientists have been ecstatic regarding the discovery, while others have been slightly more pessimistic. Sabine Hossenfelder, a physicist of Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Study, reported on Twitter:
“Of course the possibility exists that it is new physics. But I wouldn’t bet on it.”
As one of my favorite astrophysicists, Neil deGrasse Tyson, said:
“During our brief stay on planet Earth, we owe ourselves and our descendants the opportunity to explore — in part because it’s fun to do. But there’s a far nobler reason. The day our knowledge of the cosmos ceases to expand, we risk regressing to the childish view that the universe figuratively and literally revolves around us.”
abijohn.com on retwtr