Scientists recently discovered an anomaly in the 4 fundamental forces of nature. What was it and might it indicate a 5th fundamental force?
Have Physicists Discovered A Fifth Force Of Nature?
“At first glance, the news is ground-breaking. A team of American particle physicists, building on some Hungarian work, announced the “possible discovery” of a fifth fundamental force of nature. If true, this is massive. But peer a bit closer, and the claim appears to be built on some shaky foundations. Here’s what you need to know.”
Evidence Of A ‘Fifth Force’ Faces Scrutiny
“Last year, a team of nuclear physicists in Hungary observed an anomaly in the decays of excited beryllium-8 atoms – an unexpected preference for spitting out pairs of particles with a particular angle of separation. The bump in the physicists’ data was unmistakable, with odds of less than one in 100 billion of arising by chance. Reporting the anomaly in Physical Review Letters in January, the researchers argued that it could signify the existence of a new fundamental particle. But at first, few took notice.”
The Standard Model
“The theories and discoveries of thousands of physicists since the 1930s have resulted in a remarkable insight into the fundamental structure of matter: everything in the universe is found to be made from a few basic building blocks called fundamental particles, governed by four fundamental forces. Our best understanding of how these particles and three of the forces are related to each other is encapsulated in the Standard Model of particle physics. Developed in the early 1970s, it has successfully explained almost all experimental results and precisely predicted a wide variety of phenomena. Over time and through many experiments, the Standard Model has become established as a well-tested physics theory.”
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