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Science

Quarks Know Their Left From Their Right 150

Posted by samzenpus
from the spinning-away dept.
sciencehabit writes "How an electron interacts with other matter depends on which way it's spinning as it zips along—to the right like a football thrown by a right-handed quarterback or the left like a pigskin thrown by a lefty. Now, physicists have confirmed that quarks—the particles that join in trios to form the protons and neutrons in atomic nuclei—exhibit the same asymmetry. The result could give physics a new weapon in the grand hunt for new particles and forces. Or they can search for subtle hints of exotic new things beyond their tried-and-true standard model by studying familiar particles in great detail. In the latter approach, the new experiment gives physicists a way to probe for certain kinds of new forces."
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Quarks Know Their Left From Their Right

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  • Censorship (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 07, 2014 @05:05AM (#46183927)

    Does anybody remember how Slashdot never used to delete posts? Then they were forced into it by the Scientology thing. Well, that has changed.

    Stories submitted to the Slashdot firehose that take a negative view on the site's redesign are being deleted. 4 hours ago, it was full of anti-beta posts. Now they are gone. That's right. A forum that usually leaves V14GRA spam in place for posterity is deleting user content.

    Then there is this [slashdot.org] comment. It was the first post on the Beta discussion thread. As such, most of the best comments are attached to it. Then, in five minutes, it went from +5 to -1 flamebait and, get this, was reordered to the bottom of the thread!

    Dice PR is now a valid reason for Slashdot to delete user content. Awesome!

  • by wonkey_monkey (2592601) on Friday February 07, 2014 @05:31AM (#46184041) Homepage

    to the right like a football thrown by a right-handed quarterback or the left like a pigskin thrown by a lefty.

    Oh, thanks, I was having such trouble working out what you meant by "left" and "right." And thanks for confusing some of your non-American readers with your references to footballs that you throw (what's that about?), and then referring to them almost immediately afterwards as "pigskins" instead.

    Of course it's a terrible analogy anyway, since particle spin is only loosely analogous to every-day spin.

    If it was that kind of spin, wouldn't "clockwise" and "anti-clockwise" be better words for it anyway? "Left" and "right" need a decision on which point you're looking at as well as direction.

    Does it all come from electrons spiralling left or right in the old particle accelerators?

  • parity violations (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Iamthecheese (1264298) on Friday February 07, 2014 @08:01AM (#46184647)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaon#CP_violation_in_neutral_meson_oscillations [wikipedia.org]

    Wikipedia has this to say: Since neutral kaons carry strangeness, they cannot be their own antiparticles. Which, to me, may as well me an incantation to be mumbled over three skulls and a chicken. What real-world thing can be made with this knowledge?

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