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Mar 9, 2016

New LHC results suggest there’s a flaw in the standard model of physics

Posted by in categories: particle physics, space

Recent results from the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Switzerland hint at activity going on beyond the standard model of particle physics — which means we could finally be about to enter a new era in physics.

Right now, the standard model is the best explanation we have for how the Universe works and how it’s held together. But there are big gaps — most noticeably, the fact that the model doesn’t actually account for gravity — so scientists have spent decades probing the boundaries of physics for signs of any activity that the standard model can’t explain. And now they’ve found one.

The discrepancy deals with a particle called the B meson. According to the standard model, B mesons should decay at very specific angles and frequencies — but those predictions don’t match up what’s been seen in LHC experiments, suggesting that something else is going on. And if we can figure out what that is, it’ll take us closer to unlocking some of the mysteries in our Universe.

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