Combining the results of two different experiments at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Geneva, Switzerland has allowed scientists to observe a rare subatomic process for the first time.
Joint analysis of two different experiments conducted by the LHCb and CMS has indicated the occurrence of a rare decay of Bs particles into two different muons. For those who don’t know: Bs particles are heavy composite particles containing a strange quark and a bottom anti-quark.
According to predictions made by theorists, such decays would occur just four times in every billion collisions; this ratio was maintained by the two recent experiments.
Prof. Sheldon Stone of Syracuse University, who also happens to be a member of the above mentioned LHCb collaboration, said that such an accurate theoretical prediction has left him and his team absolutely amazed; he added that what’s even more amazing is that people in charge of the experiments have actually managed to observe it. According to Prof Stone, this observation is a big triumph for the experiments and the Large Hadron Collider.
Both CMS and LHCb analyze properties of the particles for identifying cracks in the Standard Model of the universe. For those who are wondering what a Standard Model is: it is a model that describes the behavior of all the directly observable matters in our universe in the best possible manner. However, it is widely believed that the Standard Model is incomplete as it doesn’t address significant issues like the presence of the dark matter.
Experiments that force scientists to deviate from this model of the universe have the potential of serving as evidence of the presence of new physics such as new forces or particles capable of solving mysteries like the dark matter.
Joel Butler of Fermilab, who was a member of the team carrying out the CMS experiment, informed that a large share of the theories that try to extend our universe’ Standard Model predicts a rise in the rate of Bs decay. Butler added that the new observations will be allowing scientists to limit severely or discount parameters of the majority of those theories. According to him, a viable theory should predict changes that are small enough for being accommodated by the existing uncertainty.