A Crack In The Theory Of Everything? Physicists Announce Possible Violation ...

Discussion in 'Physics & Math' started by Time/02112, May 19, 2001.

  1. Time/02112 Senior Member Registered Senior Member

    A Crack In The Theory Of Everything? Physicists Announce Possible Violation Of Standard Model Of Particle Physics... http://www.bnl.gov/bnlweb/pubaf/pr/bnlpr020801.htm
    UPTON, NY -- Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory, in collaboration with researchers from 11 institutions in the U.S., Russia, Japan, and Germany, today announced an experimental result that directly confronts the so-called Standard Model of particle physics. "This work could open up a whole new world of exploration for physicists interested in new theories, such as supersymmetry, which extend the Standard Model," says Boston University physicist Lee Roberts, co-spokesperson for the experiment.

    The Standard Model is an overall theory of particle physics that has withstood rigorous experimental challenge for 30 years. The Brookhaven finding -- a precision measurement of something called the anomalous magnetic moment of the muon, a type of subatomic particle -- deviates from the value predicted by the Standard Model. This indicates that other physical theories that go beyond the assumptions of the Standard Model may now be open to experimental exploration. The results were reported today at a special colloquium at Brookhaven Lab and have been submitted to Physical Review Letters.

    Scientists at Brookhaven, doing research at an experiment dubbed the muon g-2 (pronounced gee-minus-two), have been collecting data since 1997. Until late last week, they did not know whether their work would confirm the prediction of the Standard Model. "We are now 99 percent sure that the present Standard Model calculations cannot describe our data," says Brookhaven physicist Gerry Bunce, project manager for the experiment.
    The Standard Model, in development since the 1960s, explains and gives order to the menagerie of subatomic particles discovered throughout the 1940s and 1950s at particle accelerators of ever-increasing power at Brookhaven and other locations in the United States and Europe. The theory encompasses three of the four forces known to exist in the universe -- the strong force, the electromagnetic force, and the weak force -- but not the fourth force, gravity.

    The g-2 values for electrons and muons are among the most precisely known quantities in physics -- and have been in good agreement with the Standard Model. The g-2 value measures the effects of the strong, weak, and electromagnetic forces on a characteristic of these particles known as "spin" -- somewhat similar to the spin of a toy top. Using Standard Model principles, theorists have calculated with great precision how the spin of a muon, a particle similar to but heavier than the electron, would be affected as it moves through a magnetic field. Previous experimental measurements of this g-2 value agreed with the theorists' calculations, and this has been a major success of the Standard Model.

    The scientists and engineers at Brookhaven, however -- using a very intense source of muons, the world's largest superconducting magnet, and very precise and sensitive detectors -- have measured g-2 to a much higher level of precision. The new result is numerically greater than the prediction. "There appears to be a significant difference between our experimental value and the theoretical value from the Standard Model," says Yale physicist Vernon Hughes, who initiated the new measurement and is co-spokesperson for the experiment.

    "There are three possibilities for the interpretation of this result," he says. "Firstly, new physics beyond the Standard Model, such as supersymmetry, is being seen. Secondly, there is a small statistical probability that the experimental and theoretical values are consistent. Thirdly, although unlikely, the history of science in general has taught us that there is always the possibility of mistakes in experiments and theories."

    "Many people believe that the discovery of supersymmetry [a theory that predicts the existence of companion particles for all the known particles] may be just around the corner," Roberts says. "We may have opened the first tiny window to that world."

    All the physicists agree that further study is needed. And they still have a year's worth of data to analyze. "When we analyze the data from the experiment's year 2000 run, we'll reduce the level of error by a factor of 2," says physicist William Morse, Brookhaven resident spokesperson for g-2. The team expects that analysis to come within the next year. Furthermore, Hughes adds, substantial additional data that have not yet been used in evaluating the theoretical value of g-2 are now available from accelerators in Russia, China, and at Cornell University. These data could reduce significantly the error in the theoretical value.

    This research was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. National Science Foundation, the German Bundesminister fur Bildung und Forschung, and the Russian Ministry of Science, and through the U.S.-Japan Agreement in High Energy Physics.

    The U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory creates and operates major facilities available to university, industrial and government personnel for basic and applied research in the physical, biomedical and environmental sciences and in selected energy technologies. The Laboratory is operated by Brookhaven Science Associates, a not-for-profit research management company, under contract with the U.S. Department of Energy.

    D.O.E. they say? Hmmm???
    arent they the same ones responsible for NOT pouring any fundining for Development of more efficient energy resouces?
    we've HAD the Technology for years! so the question still remains...Why have they not "DEVELOPED" any of this stuff?
    now that we are facing rolling blackouts, and the fact that GOV. G"Grey" Davis & Co. has finally stepped forward announcing criminal allegations are sufficient to press charges? Ya Right, that'll be the day!
    these energy cartels will do whatever the HELL they wish!n untill "We the Sheeple" do something to put a stop to this nonesense, once & FOR all!
    and to the D.O.E.... Get off your asses & do something right for a change...
    D E V E L O P ! and Develop something that is truly beneficial, and don't rely on fosil fuels! Please Get it right this "Time"
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  3. Turbine Registered Senior Member

    Yeah, Old news to me....I posted something on this back on Febuary 13 in the General Science and Tec. board. It's still there, but there is nothing to see, as the linked page expired.(Called Supersymetry)The bone heads forgot to include the effects of gravity, in the model.Soooo yer right ! Everything we know is all wrong. Can we get refunds on our student loans !
    MAYBE we can do something constructive with this like figure out how to re-use / re-process spent fuel rods instead of finding places to put something that is never going to go away.
    MAYBE we can do something destructive with this like figure out how to make our weapons of global destruction even bigger and more powerfull.
    But the easiest thing to do, is sweep it under the rug, and say we didn't see it.

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  5. free_thinker Registered Member

    is it just me or was i there

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    whats the name of the building i live a few miles away from bnl its kind of cool
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  7. kmguru Staff Member

    It is the DOD that should be looking for big bombs not DOE. May be DOE is looking for a hot fusion engine, now that everybody got out of cold fusion business.

    BTW, if cold fusion would have worked, your utility bills could have reduced by a fator of 100. Then most utility companies may have gone out of business. They are glad, it did not. (or may be it did?)
  8. Moose Registered Member


    I sense that there are some undelying anarchistic feelings here....with which i am sympathetic. Technology is dangerous to a capitalistic world where if the balance of income is disturbed, heads roll. So it gets the, "i think that i'll give that a hoover, bleach, disinfect, destroyburnetecetecet
    the beauty of it.......


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  9. kmguru Staff Member

    Re: a-ha!

    Neh....you just have to take your smart pill and disturb the balance - perfectly acceptable.....and desirable

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