Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Elementary Question: Subatomic Particle

  1. Mar 3, 2004 #1
    Need some pointers handling this question:

    "Invent a subatomic particle and describe its likely properties. Where in the atom would you expect your particle to exist, would it be stable, what is its mass, what is its charge, etc.? Present your findings to the class via whatever media you wish."
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 4, 2004 #2
    You'd need to give your particle at least a mass (can be 0) and a charge (in units of e). Then think about where you'd think that this particle would 'feel' at home. Remember: charges with opposite sign attract eachother.

    What kind of level of sofistication are you looking for? (e.g.: the mass has something to do with the stability). Do you want to include spin, isospin, color-charge, etc. etc. ?
  4. Mar 4, 2004 #3
    Very Simplistic

    Sophistication level= very low level

    I thought I'd call it a "zetchok" and make it a component of a neutron. Thanks...have to have answer by 8 central tonight
  5. Mar 4, 2004 #4


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Gold Member

    There are many resources you can use in the net. The first that comes to mind is the "Particle adventure" site.

    I don't know how much time you want to invest on this, or how long should your presentation be, but here are some ideas:

    1. If the zetchok is a stable particle, its mass needs to be smaller than that of the neutron, since it is "always" there. On the other hand, if it is an unstable particle, it can have pretty much any mass you want.

    2. I'd go for an unstable particle. Then, you can also say what its lifetime is.

    3. Another thing you can choose is if your particle is:

    a) A combination of quarks that was not seen before (you may know that these days there is a lot of excitement in many laboratories because some of them have found evidence for "pentaquarks"; all particles known to date are combinations of either two or three quarks, and finding one made out of five quarks would be quite a discovery), or

    b) Something else (a new quark? a new lepton? something completely new?)

    4. Many particles are "mediators" for a force. You can say that your particle is the exchange particle for a new interaction. So far, we know of four fundamental interactions, each one carried by its own particle: gravity (graviton), electromagnetism (photons), weak nuclear force (W and Z bosons) and strong nuclear force (gluons); there is no evidence of any other force, but you can invent one along with your particle.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook