Large Hadron Collider smashup reveals predicted quark combo’s existence
A newly discovered particle is dishing out a double dose of charm.
The newcomer is a baryon, meaning that it’s composed of three smaller particles called quarks — in this case, two “charm” quarks and one “up” quark. Detected by the LHCb experiment at CERN, the European physics laboratory near Geneva, the baryon is the first to be discovered with two charm quarks, LHCb scientists reported July 6 at the European Physical Society Conference on High Energy Physics in Venice, Italy. Scientists produced the particle by ramming protons together at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider and sifting through the aftermath.
Baryons can be composed of a variety of quark combinations, two up quarks and one charm quark, for example, or one “strange” quark and two “down” quarks. Because the charm