An international team using an intense calcium-48 beam provided by GSI research facility in Darmstadt, Germany, and a target material of radioactive berkelium-249 supplied by Oak Ridge National Lab has produced two atoms of the superheavy element with atomic number Z=117. The team’s experiment confirms the initial 2010 observation by the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research in Dubna, Russia.
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Scientists have discovered an elusive particle that may be an example of a tetraquark, an entirely new form of matter.
Experiments at the Large Hadron Collider, the overachieving device famous for finding the Higgs boson, have confirmed that a new particle called Z(4430) exists, and is the best evidence to date of a new form of matter called a tetraquark.
Quarks are the subatomic particles that form all matter and are usually found in pairs or triplets – but scientists had long predicted that a new particle Z(4430) could exist that was a combination of four quarks. And now the LHC has spotted as many as 4,000 of the elusive particles, the researchers reported in ArXiv.org.
Before you get too excited, there is still work to be done to determine if Z(4430) really is a tetraquark, and, if so, what that means for us.
Right now, scientists still aren’t 100% sure a tetraquark would obey the laws of physics. Thomas Cohen at the University of Maryland in College Park told New Scientist: “Our computers aren’t yet big enough to solve the theory from first principles.”
But the big first hurdle has been overcome – scientists have proved that Z(4430) really does exist and shown there’s still so much we have to discovery about the world we live in.
Source: New Scientist
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