This episode features an edition of Particle/Counter Particle. In this science debate show, two physicists discuss the possible existence of “sterile neutrinos,” a theorized fourth kind of neutrino. If sterile neutrinos exist, it would be a radical discovery, adding a new building block to the Standard Model of Particle Physics.
From Inverse, Sept. 28, 2021: Suspect number one at the center of the particle-filled mystery? The humble muon.
Scientists at CERN began studying the magnetism of muons in the 1950s, but in the 1990s this research moved stateside, first to Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island until 2001 and now to Fermilab.
From Scientific American, September 14, 2021: Fermilab theorist Marcela Carena writes about the ever changing behavior of muons and the first result of the Muon g-2 experiment that suggested muons were not acting as current theory prescribes in an article titled, “Weird muons may point to new particles and forces of nature,” posted in Scientific American.
From Forbes, Sept. 8, 2021: The Standard Model provides the framework of all the known and discovered fundamental particles, but has no way of providing expected values for what masses each particle should possess. Fermilab’s Main Ring, in operation for 25 years by physicists who used the accelerator for experiments, helped to create our current picture of the ultimate structure of matter, the Standard Model of particle interactions.
From Sciences et Avenir (France), August 6, 2021: Two recent physics experiments, Muon g-2 and the LHCb, have upset the whole physics of matter possibly finding new forces. Fermilab’s Muon g-2 experiment measured the muon’s magnetic moment confirming the Brookhaven result that revealed it didn’t match the theory.
From DOE.gov, August 2, 2021: The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced a plan to provide $100 million over the next four years for new research in high energy physics. Funding will support research and experiments that explore the frontiers of high energy physics. This includes Fermilab’s Muon g-2 experiment which aims to search for signs of physics beyond the standard model, scientists’ current best theory to describe the most basic building blocks of the universe.
From Portable TV, I Don’t Understand, July 18, 2021: William Shatner interviews Saskia Charity of Fermilab on what is a muon and the meaning of the Muon g-2 experiment result.
From Interesting Engineering, July 14, 2021: Particle physicist Chris Quigg from Fermilab, came up with the “double simplex” representation in 2005 to help familiarize people with the known particles of nature.
From Silicon Republic (Ireland), July 7, 2021: Sinéad Ryan, a professor of theoretical high-energy physics at Trinity College Dublin, describes her postdoctoral research work on lattice QCD at Fermilab, the next-generation of exascale computing and the structural barriers and imbalance of diversity in the physics community.
From How Stuff Works, July 1, 2021: Fermilab’s Muon g-2 result announcement in April 2021 introduced the world to the muon. Although the particle was first discovered in the late 1930’s, the muon made international headlines confirming previous findings that the muon behaves in a way that contradicts the Standard Model of Particle Physics.