The Large Hadron Collider has detected an anomaly in particle decay that might reveal physics beyond the Standard Model and could tell scientists a bit more about our universe.
While analyzing data collected during the LHCb experiment in 2011 and 2012, scientists noticed a discrepancy that couldn’t be explained by the Standard Model of particle physics – a discrepancy which may have some far-reaching consequences.
The anomaly discovered by researchers is associated with particles called ‘B mesons’ which should decay at very specific angles and frequencies according to the Standard Model. However, the data obtained during the LHCb experiment doesn’t match these predictions, and now the scientists are trying to figure out why, and what it means for science and for mankind.
“To put it in terms of the cinema, where we once only had a few leaked scenes from a much-anticipated blockbuster, the LHC has finally treated fans to the first real trailers,” said Mariusz Witek of the Institute of Nuclear Physics of the Polish Academy of Sciences
The Standard Model of Physics describes the structure of matter. Particles, in particular, function in different roles in this model. As an example, bosons are the carriers of forces while photons are related to electromagnetic interactions. The Higgs Boson is actually responsible for providing particles with mass except for gluons and photons
The researchers are giving it all on this matter
Currently, researchers are focusing on detecting new particles beyond the Standard Model. In 2011, the researchers saw a puzzling anomaly with a beauty meson, which is composed of a light quark and a heavy beauty antiquark. The researchers also detected an anomaly in the decay of a B meson that contained two muons along with other products
Marcin Chrzaszcz from IFJ PAN said. “To put it slightly differently, 5 sigma means that we have a probability of less than one to three-and-a-half million that random fluctuations can provide a result like that seen. At the presently observed number of such decays, the accuracy of our analysis has reached a deviation of 3.7 sigmas. So we still cannot make claims of a discovery, but we certainly have an interesting clue.”
.The researchers aren’t exactly sure what’s causing these anomalies, but they have a theory. It could be down to a new intermediate Z-prime boson that’s involved in the decay of B mesons.
Source: Sputnik News