Roughly 15 billion years ago, during the Big Bang, equal amounts of matter and anti-matter should have been created, with an anti-particle for every particle created. Yet when matter and anti-matter meet, they both disappear in a flash of light, so why didn’t they annihilate each other completely? For some reason, during the first moments of the Big Bang, although lots of matter and anti-matter did meet and annihilate, we were left with a slight surplus of matter, which makes up the Universe today. Whilst grateful for our existence, scientists have been struggling for many years to find an explanation. A new laboratory just completed at the University of Sussex will test one of the possible answers.
The researchers at Sussex believe that the surviving matter must have a special kind of asymmetry in order to explain its survival. They think that the negative charge of the electron must be pushed over to one side instead of being centred. This offset is so tiny, that even if the electron were enlarged to the size of the Earth, the offset would only be the size of an atom. A similar effect is predicted in the neutron where the positive and negative charges within it may also be displaced. It could be thanks to this tiny effect, called an electric dipole moment that the Universe itself exists.
Scientific theory can predict how big this electric dipole moment should be, but to actually look for it, researchers need the latest in low temperature equipment and lasers. The new laboratory, the Centre for the Measurement of Particle Electric Dipole Moments, has been equipped with a £1.7 million award from the Joint Infrastructure Fund and offers the
possibility of a breakthrough in the near future.
Julia Maddock | alphagalileo
Meteoritic stardust unlocks timing of supernova dust formation
19.01.2018 | Carnegie Institution for Science
Artificial agent designs quantum experiments
19.01.2018 | Universität Innsbruck
On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.
We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...
What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...
For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.
Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...
At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.
No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.
Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...
08.01.2018 | Event News
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
19.01.2018 | Materials Sciences
19.01.2018 | Health and Medicine
19.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy