Visual representation of the "top" quark

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by KarlMarx, Oct 13, 2005.

  1. KarlMarx

    KarlMarx Senior Member

    May 9, 2004
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    Looking to brighten up your living room or that breakfast nook with something unique? Have you considered a visualization of the "top" quark and its other relatives?

    What is a quark? No, it's not what your favorite whisky comes in. No, it's not what a duck says....

    A quark is an elementary particle that comprises a family of particles known as "bosons"... these particles include ... the proton and the nucleus of the atom... one of their peculiar properties is that they possess fractional charge (unlike the electron and the proton, which possess a -1 and +1 charge, respectively)

    In the case of the proton and nucleus, quarks arrange themselves in groups of 3 and are held together with the "strong" force. The strong force is the strongest of the 4 fundamental forces (the others are the "weak" force, the electromagnetic force and gravity). Fortunately for us, the strong force only has an effective radius of slight larger than a neutron (about 10**-15 meters or 0.000000000000001 meters). Plus the strong force is carried by force carriers known as gluons. Unfortunately, the strong force is so powerful that if you tried to pry a quark loose from a neutron or a proton, the energy you applied would turn into another quark! For that reason, quarks never travel alone..... but either in 3's (as in the neutron and proton) or in 2's (as in other particles e.g. as mesons)

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