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Astronomy is bad | Muon experiments point to new physics

Muons are not spinning at the best physics models predicted. Why not? It could be due to all of the idiopathic subatomic particles that emerge in and out of existence in the quantum foam.

This is not some kind of sci-fi technique. This comes from real experimental results, and perhaps the universe tells us that we don’t yet understand everything about it.

Some of these extremely interesting and game-changing results come from Fermilab, a high-energy accelerator laboratory in Illinois. They performed several types of experiments there, and another called Muon g-2 (literally “g minus 2”), which examined a sub-particle called a. muon.

Muons are similar to electrons, such as having a negative charge and having the same spin. (The fundamental property of a particle, which will be important for a while) even if it has a mass greater than 200

Using everything we know about subatomic particles (This is called the standard model). Physicists are able to predict many miwons̵

7; behavior. For example, a rotating charged particle has a corresponding magnetic property called a. Time periodWhich is a measure of magnetic field strength and orientation If you put a muon into a magnetic field, it will get a so-called wobble. Recession; Its physical appearance is similar to that of a rocking toy while spinning on a table.

The model predicts this recession very accurately. ExtremelyThe physicist assigns a value to this called. g-factorAnd it’s very close But not precisely equal to 2

Here’s what makes it fun: On our macro level, we like to think that the space is smooth and continuous. But on a quantum scale, it’s an incredibly small scale (like 10-35 M!). Quantum mechanics implies that space is not Continuous and smooth, and may instead come in discrete units like a check mark on a graph. This means that at that level the area may not be empty. Instead, it will boil and bubble with energy instead.

Sometimes this energy creates subatomic particles. (Since mass and energy are two sides of the same coin, E equals mc2 And all of them), these particles can be formed But this same law of quantum reality calls for particles to react and become energy again, going back to vacuum energy. This is called (And i like this) Quantum foam.

The muons that spin in a magnetic field are affected by the quantum foam. Without foam, the g-factor value is very close to 2. But particles emerging in and out of existence affect the wobbling of the muon. Abnormal magnetic moment Deviation from normal

The standard model predicts the value of this anomalous period based on everything known about forces and particles. It should be very accurate. Still, it’s always good to be sure, and that’s exactly what the Muon g-2 experiment did. It injects mion into a very stable magnetic field and measure Wobbling, which can be compared to divination If they agree, we understand how the quantum universe works.

If not … it’s interesting, isn’t it?

The standard model predicts an abnormal magnetic moment of the muon to be 0.00116591810 (± 0.00000000043 As I said very precisely)

The new test has been given a value. 0.00116592061 (± 0.00000000041)

Different The difference is sure to be small, just 0.0002%. Still, they should be equal. And they are not

This little difference means a lot. It means that There are forces and / or particles that act on the quantum level that we don’t know about!

Well, maybe this is the monkey in the wrench: the result is not. rather Based on statistical data It is possible that it is a coincidence. It’s like flipping a coin: if it pops up three times in a row, you might think the coin is worried. But there is a one in eight chance that it will happen randomly. The more times you turn it over and it pops up, the less chance it will be random.

Scientists use a term called Sigma To measure this opportunity The gold standard in particle physics experiments is when an experiment is in the 5 sigma range, which means there is a one third of a million random possibilities of occurrence, or if you want, there is a 99.99997% chance that it will be true. (One sigma is approximately 68%, two is 95%, three is 97%, and the other is creeping closer to 100%). The Muon g-factor results are only 4.2 sigma, which means they still have an approximation of probability. 1 in 38,000 that would be due to random noise.

Still, it’s a 99.997% chance that wasn’t a random chance, and that’s pretty good.*Just not enough physicists to declare victory. The good news is that they are not finished yet. So far, the test has been running three times, the fourth test is being done and the fifth run is planned. Scientists have examined the data from the first experiment. But only about 6% of the total amount of data they expect from the experiment. To use the analogy above, it’s like they flipped a coin a few times and got bizarre results. But it will still flip several more times to be sure.

If the rest of the information is consistent with what they have seen so far, they will pass a five-sigma certainty. And if that happens, it means that the universe will be more bizarre and mysterious than even the quantum mechanics we know tells us… and that’s it. already Tell us that the universe is strange

If you want all of this in cartoon style, Jorge Cham has to say:

So this can be very exciting, the Standard Model has been quite successful. (I.e. predicted the existence of the Higgs boson, which was first discovered a few years ago), but we know there is a crack in it, something unpredictable as well, in this case the muons that float and spin and wobble. The magnetic field is beckoning us further along that path, waving us toward other physics that we don’t yet understand or even know about.

And that’s the dream of every particle physicist. When the experiment validates the theory, it’s good because it’s like showing that the road behind us is paved smoothly.

But what will be ahead?

[[[[Correction (16:00 UTC on April 8, 2021): Originally, I incorrectly calculated percentages for those opportunities, adding two more 9 seconds to the decimal point. (In other words, I write it in straight odds, not percent, i.e. chance 0.01 is 1%) Argue! The numbers are now fixed. Also, I changed the phrase a little. The statistics cover only random opportunities. There may also be a systematic error, that is, something is not included in the device or math or whatever. These are not random and are difficult to explain. I just want to make sure I cover the bases here]

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