In particle physics, a truly neutral particle is a subatomic particle that is its own antiparticle. In other words, it remains itself under the charge conjugation which replaces particles with their corresponding antiparticles. All charges of a truly neutral particle must be equal to zero. This requires particles to not only be electrically neutral, but also requires that all of their other charges (like the colour charge) be neutral.
Known examples of such elementary particles include photons, Z bosons, and Higgs bosons, along with the hypothetical neutralinos, sterile neutrinos, and gravitons. For a spin-½ particle such as the neutralino, being truly neutral implies being a Majorana fermion.
Composite particles can also be truly neutral. A system composed of a particle forming a bound state with its antiparticle, such as the neutral pion (
), is truly neutral. Such a state is called an “-onium”, another example of which is positronium, the bound state of an electron and a positron (
By way of contrast neutrinos are not truly neutral since they have a weak isospin of ±+1/2, or equivalently, a non-zero weak hypercharge, both of which are charge-like quantum numbers. (The example presumes on evidence to date,[ when? ] which gives no indication that neutrinos are Majorana particles.)
In particle physics, an elementary particle or fundamental particle is a subatomic particle that is not composed of other particles. Particles currently thought to be elementary include the fundamental fermions, which generally are "matter particles" and "antimatter particles", as well as the fundamental bosons, which generally are "force particles" that mediate interactions among fermions. A particle containing two or more elementary particles is a composite particle.
In particle physics, a fermion is a particle that follows Fermi–Dirac statistics. Generally, it has a half-odd-integer spin: spin 1/2, spin 3/2, etc. In addition, these particles obey the Pauli exclusion principle. Fermions include all quarks and leptons and all composite particles made of an odd number of these, such as all baryons and many atoms and nuclei. Fermions differ from bosons, which obey Bose–Einstein statistics.
In nuclear physics and particle physics, the weak interaction, which is also often called the weak force or weak nuclear force, is one of the four known fundamental interactions, with the others being electromagnetism, the strong interaction, and gravitation. It is the mechanism of interaction between subatomic particles that is responsible for the radioactive decay of atoms: The weak interaction participates in nuclear fission and nuclear fusion. The theory describing its behaviour and effects is sometimes called quantum flavourdynamics (QFD), however, the term QFD is rarely used, because the weak force is better understood by electroweak theory (EWT).
The Standard Model of particle physics is the theory describing three of the four known fundamental forces in the universe and classifying all known elementary particles. It was developed in stages throughout the latter half of the 20th century, through the work of many scientists worldwide, with the current formulation being finalized in the mid-1970s upon experimental confirmation of the existence of quarks. Since then, proof of the top quark (1995), the tau neutrino (2000), and the Higgs boson (2012) have added further credence to the Standard Model. In addition, the Standard Model has predicted various properties of weak neutral currents and the W and Z bosons with great accuracy.
In particle physics, a lepton is an elementary particle of half-integer spin that does not undergo strong interactions. Two main classes of leptons exist: charged leptons, and neutral leptons. Charged leptons can combine with other particles to form various composite particles such as atoms and positronium, while neutrinos rarely interact with anything, and are consequently rarely observed. The best known of all leptons is the electron.
Electron–positron annihilation occurs when an electron and a positron collide. At low energies, the result of the collision is the annihilation of the electron and positron, and the creation of energetic photons:
In physical sciences, a subatomic particle is a particle that composes an atom. According to the Standard Model of particle physics, a subatomic particle can be either a composite particle, which is composed of other particles, or an elementary particle, which is not composed of other particles. Particle physics and nuclear physics study these particles and how they interact.
In supersymmetry, the neutralino is a hypothetical particle. In the Minimal Supersymmetric Standard Model (MSSM), a popular model of realization of supersymmetry at a low energy, there are four neutralinos that are fermions and are electrically neutral, the lightest of which is stable in an R-parity conserved scenario of MSSM. They are typically labeled
4 although sometimes is also used when is used to refer to charginos.
In particle physics, annihilation is the process that occurs when a subatomic particle collides with its respective antiparticle to produce other particles, such as an electron colliding with a positron to produce two photons. The total energy and momentum of the initial pair are conserved in the process and distributed among a set of other particles in the final state. Antiparticles have exactly opposite additive quantum numbers from particles, so the sums of all quantum numbers of such an original pair are zero. Hence, any set of particles may be produced whose total quantum numbers are also zero as long as conservation of energy and conservation of momentum are obeyed.
In particle physics, a kaon, also called a K meson and denoted
, is any of a group of four mesons distinguished by a quantum number called strangeness. In the quark model they are understood to be bound states of a strange quark and an up or down antiquark.
In particle physics, the W and Z bosons are vector bosons that are together known as the weak bosons or more generally as the intermediate vector bosons. These elementary particles mediate the weak interaction; the respective symbols are
bosons have either a positive or negative electric charge of 1 elementary charge and are each other's antiparticles. The
boson is electrically neutral and is its own antiparticle. The three particles each have a spin of 1. The
bosons have a magnetic moment, but the
has none. All three of these particles are very short-lived, with a half-life of about 3×10−25 s. Their experimental discovery was pivotal in establishing what is now called the Standard Model of particle physics.
This article describes the mathematics of the Standard Model of particle physics, a gauge quantum field theory containing the internal symmetries of the unitary product group SU(3) × SU(2) × U(1). The theory is commonly viewed as describing the fundamental set of particles – the leptons, quarks, gauge bosons and the Higgs boson.
Sterile neutrinos are hypothetical particles that are believed to interact only via gravity and not via any of the other fundamental interactions of the Standard Model. The term sterile neutrino is used to distinguish them from the known active neutrinos in the Standard Model, which carry an isospin charge of ±+1/ 2 under the weak interaction. It typically refers to neutrinos with right-handed chirality, which may be added to the Standard Model. Particles that possess the quantum numbers of sterile neutrinos and masses great enough such that they do not interfere with the current theory of Big Bang Nucleosynthesis are often called neutral heavy leptons (NHLs) or heavy neutral leptons (HNLs).
Weak neutral current interactions are one of the ways in which subatomic particles can interact by means of the weak force. These interactions are mediated by the Z boson. The discovery of weak neutral currents was a significant step toward the unification of electromagnetism and the weak force into the electroweak force, and led to the discovery of the W and Z bosons.
A Majorana fermion, also referred to as a Majorana particle, is a fermion that is its own antiparticle. They were hypothesised by Ettore Majorana in 1937. The term is sometimes used in opposition to a Dirac fermion, which describes fermions that are not their own antiparticles.
In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having volume. All everyday objects that can be touched are ultimately composed of atoms, which are made up of interacting subatomic particles, and in everyday as well as scientific usage, "matter" generally includes atoms and anything made up of them, and any particles that act as if they have both rest mass and volume. However it does not include massless particles such as photons, or other energy phenomena or waves such as light or heat. Matter exists in various states. These include classical everyday phases such as solid, liquid, and gas – for example water exists as ice, liquid water, and gaseous steam – but other states are possible, including plasma, Bose–Einstein condensates, fermionic condensates, and quark–gluon plasma.
In nuclear physics and atomic physics, weak charge refers to the Standard Model weak interaction coupling of the vector Z boson. It indicates an effect on parity violating electron scattering. For any given nuclear isotope, the total weak charge is approximately −0.99 per neutron, and +0.07 per proton. This same term is sometimes also used to refer to weak isospin, weak hypercharge, or the vector coupling of any fermion to the Z boson, all of which are distinct.
The idea that matter consists of smaller particles and that there exists a limited number of sorts of primary, smallest particles in nature has existed in natural philosophy at least since the 6th century BC. Such ideas gained physical credibility beginning in the 19th century, but the concept of "elementary particle" underwent some changes in its meaning: notably, modern physics no longer deems elementary particles indestructible. Even elementary particles can decay or collide destructively; they can cease to exist and create (other) particles in result.
In quantum mechanics, the acronym WISP refers to a largely hypothetical weakly interacting sub-eV particle, or weakly interacting slender particle, or weakly interacting slim particle – low-mass particles which rarely interact with conventional particles, if ever. With the exception of “active” neutrinos, all WISPs are hypothetical particles.