The (strong) Force be with you

By | April 28, 2012
New discovery confirms the fundamental nature of nuclear power

When non-physicists think about subatomic physics and subatomic particles, the first thing that may come to mind is the Higgs boson – the little particle responsible for explaining why mass exists. But there are a huge slew of other particles out there that rarely get to stand in the spotlight.

To put things into context: The beauty baryon is one of the signature particles of the strong force – as it's name suggests, it's very strong, about 10 to the power of 34 times stronger than gravity. Only, it is only effective at the scale of an atomic nucleus. Breaking that bond releases a lot of energy: and that is what allows nuclear power plants to generate the massive power outputs they do.

Finally, researchers at CERN have managed to capture a glimpse of this particle – due to its rapid decomposition, no easy task! With their discovery, they are now one step closer to confirming the theories behind the strong force – and why we can have nuclear power plants. Congradulations to the Zürich team on this major discovery!

/via +Marta Rauch

New Particle Discovered at CERN
A team of physicists from the University of Zurich’s Physics Institute working with the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) detector at CERN has observed for the first time a new, excited beauty baryon known …

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