Latest Elementary particle Stories

2010-07-14 13:20:00

Physicists have denied rumors that a U.S. atom smasher has detected the elusive Higgs boson. A spokesman for the lab that operates the Tevatron accelerator denied scientists had made a discovery there. The Tevatron, based at Fermilab in Illinois, is the U.S. rival to Europe's Large Hadron Collider (LHC).  An Italian particle physicist made the rumors public through a blog post. However, a spokesman for the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab) told BBC News, "There is not...

2010-06-27 13:23:07

The best theory for explaining the subatomic world got its start in 1928 when theorist Paul Dirac combined quantum mechanics with special relativity to explain the behavior of the electron. The result was relativistic quantum mechanics, which became a major ingredient in quantum field theory. With a few assumptions and ad hoc adjustments, quantum field theory has proven powerful enough to form the basis of the Standard Model of particles and forces. "Even so, it should be remembered that the...

2010-06-23 11:35:00

Scientists have simulated what is thought to be the sounds made by sub-atomic particles when they are produced at the Large Hadron Collider. Their goal is to develop a way for physicists at CERN to "listen to the data" and pick out the Higgs particle if and when they finally detect it. Lily Asquith modeled data from the giant Atlas experiment at the LHC. She worked with sound engineers to convert data taken during collisions at the LHC. "If the energy is close to you, you will hear a low...

2010-06-15 12:45:00

According to a new study, there may be multiple versions of the elusive "God particle," or Higgs boson. The Higgs boson particle is the primary goal for the $10 billion Large Hadron Collider (LHC) experiment near Geneva. However, recent studies from the LHC's U.S. rival suggest physicists could be hunting for five particles, not one. The data points to new laws of physics beyond the current accepted theory, known as the Standard Model. The Higgs boson is the sub-atomic particles that...

2010-05-19 12:20:00

Physicists at Fermilab have discovered a clue as to why the world around us is composed of normal matter and not anti-matter. Today, anti-matter is rare, but it can be produced by atom smashers, in nuclear reactions, or by cosmic rays. However, physicists believe the Big Bang should have produced equal amounts of matter and its opposite. The DZero experiment at Fermilab in Illinois has now produced results that provide a clue as to what happened to all the anti-matter. Many...

2010-05-18 06:30:00

If commissioning work goes well, the Large Hadron Collider could soon start a search for new sub-atomic particles, as early as the end of this summer, a leading physicist told BBC News. Among the first candidates for discovery are two boson particles that have been predicted to exist. The $10 billion machine has seen a half billion proton collisions since beams crossed for the first time in November 2009. The LHC is designed to search for the elusive Higgs boson and study new physics...

2010-03-24 16:50:00

Physicists at New York University have created "handshaking" particles that link together based on their shape rather than randomly. Their work, reported in the latest issue of the journal Nature, marks the first time scientists have succeeded in "programming" particles to join in this manner and offers a type of architecture that could enhance the creation of synthetic materials. "We expect these interactions to offer unprecedented opportunities for engineering 'smart' composite particles,...

2010-01-10 12:10:00

International collaboration hunting oscillation of muon to electron Physicists may see data as soon as late summer from the prototype for a $278 million science experiment in northern Minnesota that is being designed to find clues to some fundamental mysteries of the universe. But it could take years before the nation's largest "neutrino" detector answers the profound questions that matter to scientists. Construction is underway now on a 220-ton detector that is the "integration prototype"...

2010-01-07 08:40:01

Three Iowa State University physicists who took winter trips to the Large Hadron Collider for meetings and experimental work are starting to see real data from the planet's biggest science experiment. Finally. The multibillion-dollar collider made international news on Sept. 10, 2008, when it sent its first beam of protons around 17 miles of underground tunnel near Geneva, Switzerland. But breakdowns in the machine's high-current electrical connections forced a complete shutdown for more than...

2009-12-15 07:43:39

Dying, for stars, has just gotten more complicated. For some stellar objects, the final phase before or instead of collapsing into a black hole may be what a group of physicists is calling an electroweak star. Glenn Starkman, a professor of physics at Case Western Reserve University, together with former graduate students and post-docs De-Chang Dai and Dejan Stojkovic, now at the State University of New York in Buffalo, and Arthur Lue, at MIT's Lincoln Lab, offer a description of the...

Word of the Day
  • A spider.
  • Figuratively, a peevish, testy, ill-natured person.
'Attercop' comes from the Old English 'atorcoppe,' where 'atter' means 'poison, venom' and‎ 'cop' means 'spider.' 'Coppa' is a derivative of 'cop,' top, summit, round head, or 'copp,' cup, vessel, which refers to 'the supposed venomous properties of spiders,' says the OED. 'Copp' is still found in the word 'cobweb.'