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Scientists Discover Elementary Subatomic Particle

Update Date: Mar 01, 2016 02:12 PM EST
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A new elementary particle based on findings by physicists at Lancaster University show the latest addition to be an exotic subatomic tetraquark particle.

The team made the discovery during the DZero global collaboration at a United States government laboratory specializing in high-energy particle physics. The study is expected to expand human understanding of basic interactions.

The findings can be accessed on pre-print website arXiv.

"It is exciting to discover a new and unusual particle that will help us understand the strong interaction - one of the four known fundamental interactions in physics," Iain Bertram, who participated in the study, said in a press release.

DZero is among a couple of experiments that is currently being conducted at Fermilab's Tevatron collider. It was retired in 2011, but scientists still analyze billions of data that were documented from the collider's collisions.

The novel tetraquark discovery began with some hints in July 2015. It was first called X(5568), as it had a mass of 5568 megaelectronvolts. The model used to simulate the X(5568) was developed by a team, in which Bertram was a member.

"Quarks, which are point-like elementary particles, are made up of six types, or "flavors": up, down, strange, charm, bottom and top, and each flavor has an antimatter counterpart. Although all other known tetraquarks contain at least two of the same flavor, X(5568) has four: up, down, strange and bottom," explains HNGN.

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