(ORDO NEWS) — Dubbed the axial Higgs boson, this particle was found in an experiment that would fit on a small kitchen countertop.
Physicists did not believe for a long time that they managed to detect the particle predicted in the theory. However, now there is no doubt, and it really can be a candidate for dark matter particles.
In addition to being the first of its kind, this magnetic cousin of the Higgs boson (the Hoggs field is responsible for particle mass) could be a candidate for dark matter particles, which make up 26% of the total mass of the universe, but only manifests through gravity.
Can a new particle explain dark matter
In the Standard Model, different particles are carriers of different fields. For example, photons produce electromagnetic radiation, and W and Z bosons are responsible for the weak force that governs decay at subatomic levels.
However, when the universe was young and hot, electromagnetism and the weak force were one field. As the Universe cooled, the electroweak force “decayed”, the W-boson and the Z-boson began to behave differently than photons: these are massive particles, their mass is tens of times greater than the mass of a proton, but they are short-lived – about 3⋅10 to minus 25 degrees of a second . Why did the particles become so heavy?
Physicists have long predicted a particle called the axial Higgs boson and even used it to explain dark matter, but scientists have managed to observe this particle. This is also the first time physicists have observed a state with multiple broken symmetries.
Symmetry breaking occurs when a symmetrical system that appears to be the same in all directions becomes asymmetrical.
The fact that this double symmetry breaking still fits with current theories of physics is exciting, because it could be the key to creating hitherto unseen particles that could explain dark matter.
Adding this extra symmetry breaking through the axial Higgs boson is one way to achieve this. Despite what physicists had predicted, the observation of such a Higgs boson came as a surprise to the team, and they spent a year trying to verify their results.
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