The Large Hadron Collider beauty (LHCb) experiment has observed three never-before-seen particles.
GS III- Science and Technology
Dimensions of the Article:
- What are quarks?
- What about tetraquarks and pentaquarks?
- The Large Hadron Collider beauty (LHCb) experiment — which is investigating the slight differences between matter and antimatter by studying a type of particle called the “beauty quark”, or “b quark” — has observed three never-before-seen particles.
- The three “exotic” additions — a new kind of “pentaquark” and the first-ever pair of “tetraquarks” — to the growing list of new hadrons found at the LHC will help physicists better understand how quarks bind together into these composite particles
What are quarks?
- Quarks are elementary particles that come in six “flavours”: up, down, charm, strange, top, and bottom.
- They usually combine together in groups of twos and threes to form hadrons such as the protons and neutrons that make up atomic nuclei.
- But they can also combine into four-quark and five-quark particles, called tetraquarks and pentaquarks.
- These exotic hadrons were predicted by theorists about six decades ago — around the same time as conventional hadrons — but they have been observed by LHCb and other experiments only in the past 20 years.
What about tetraquarks and pentaquarks?
- According to the CERN release, most exotic hadrons discovered in the past two decades are tetraquarks or pentaquarks containing a charm quark and a charm antiquark — with the remaining two or three quarks being an up, down or strange quark or their antiquarks.
-Source: Indian Express