|Unifying gravity with the other three interactions ( the electromagnetic, weak, and strong interactions) would provide a theory of everything (TOE), rather than a GUT Grand Unified Theory. GUTs are often seen as an intermediate step towards a TOE. And now suddenly on April 6th, Mystery signal at Fermilab hints at 'technicolour' force. Last week at Tevatron collider scientists spotted evidence of new particles that might point to a previously unidentified force of nature or yet another force, "The Fifth Force".
I will not go too much into the physics of the finding as it is very confusing. But all last week on holiday driving through Europe, I tried to read everything I can grab in a few reading moments I had. This is exciting and yet kind of disappointing to me as I was hoping that we are getting closer to this unified theory of a single force holding the universe together. and yet this news takes us further from The 'Holy Grail' of physics. in next two paragraphs I just quickly go over some of the recent history in Physics,
Isaac Newton wrote down his theory of gravity in 1689, and his equations are used to this day to send space probes to the outer edges of our Solar System. It took over 200 years and the genius of Albert Einstein to discover a deeper theory of General Theory of Relativity that describes the force we see as gravity as being due to the bending and curving of space and time (or to be more accurate "space-time") by heavy objects like the Earth and Sun.
Now at atomic scale and at the temperatures common to our world, four discrete forces govern the interactions of matter - gravity, electromagnetism, the weak nuclear force, and the strong nuclear force. Each force is carried by a separate "messenger particle" unique to it and is the subject of most of the recent research works in big accelerator research. The strong force is by far the strongest of the forces, followed by the electromagnetic force, the weak force, and finally the extremely weak gravitational force. Though these four forces govern every matter interaction, a theory that unites them all is still being sought. The most recent candidate was the string theory.
So with this sighting at Fermilab's Tevartron collider a glimpse of an unidentified particle that, should it prove to be real, will radically alter physicists' prevailing ideas about how nature works and how particles get their mass.
This experiment started some 20 years ago byEstia Eichten, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory - Recently at Fermilab's the work is on the theory known as Technicolor, which proposes the existence of a fifth fundamental force in addition to the four already known: gravity, electromagnetism, and the strong and weak nuclear forces. They also explain that Technicolour is very similar to the strong force, which binds quarks together in the nuclei of atoms, only it operates at much higher energies. It is also able to give particles their mass – rendering the Higgs boson unnecessary.
The new force is released with a zoo of new particles. Lane and Eichten's model predicts that a technicolour particle called a technirho would often decay into a W boson and another particle called a technipion.
So what is the problem?
The problem is that if technicolour is correct, it would not be able to resolve all the questions left unanswered by the standard model as it stands - For example, one of them is about the Big Bang Theory where physicists assume that at the high energies found in the early universe, the fundamental forces of nature were unified into a single superforce. Supersymmetry, physicists' leading contender for a theory beyond the standard model, paves a way for the forces to unite at high energies, but technicolour does not. So more experiments are required to see which theory is true.
Basically, The Standard Model of physics, which explains how sub-atomic particles interact with the four known forces of nature – gravity, electromagnetism and the strong and weak nuclear forces – goes on to predicts that the Higgs boson, if it exists, could also explain why things have a weight to them or cause gravity.
The researchers believe the anomaly in this data indicated that the undiscovered sub-atomic particle has a mass of about 150 times that of a proton. WOW - Proton is the positively-charged entity within an atom's nucleus. If this proves to be the case, it could spell the end of the idea that matter has a mass because of the existence of another kind of sub-atomic particle called the Higgs boson, the so-called "God particle" predicted by theoretical physicists but yet to be found.
So basically 20 years later with millions of pounds spent in many locations we are no closer in the big unified theory. I know that this snapshot of what happened with the collision can be just a statistical mistake - but if correct then we are in trouble as the new particle find turns physics upside-down.
"If in this experiment the signal is what we think it is, we could be on the verge of a different view to why matter has mass, whereas light doesn't," said Professor Kenneth Lane, a theoretical physicist at Boston University. "We might be seeing the signal for a new kind of nuclear interaction which we have called 'technicolour'. This scenario basically replaces the Higgs boson."