Usually ‘www’ is followed by ‘dot’, but not in this experiment. About 270 of his WWW events, a trio of particles called W bosons, occurred in experiments at the world’s largest particle accelerator, the researchers report in his Aug. 5 physical review letter. By measuring how often W boson triplets occur in such experiments, physicists can test cracks in the Standard Model, a fundamental theory of particle physics.
To create rare boson triplets, scientists in his ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) near Geneva smashed protons into each other. W bosons are weak force-carrying particles responsible for certain types of radioactive decay. Particles are shrouded in mystery: In April, researchers in his CDF experiment, now completed at his Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois, reported that the W boson was larger than predicted, suggesting that the standard model suggesting something is wrong (SN: 4/22.7.).
In the new study, the team found that the odds of the WWW appearing were slightly higher than predicted by the Standard Model, but not so much that scientists would debunk the theory. “We need to collect more data to see how this plays out,” said an ATLAS spokesman and his CERN Physics Laboratory, where the LHC is based. Scholar Andreas Hoecker says.
These proton collisions, which reached energies of 13 trillion electron volts, occurred before the LHC was shut down for its upgrade in 2018. In July, the LHC started at a higher energy of 13.6 trillion electron volts (SN: 4/22/22). New data could help determine whether these threesomes are indeed cheating.