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The W boson is bigger than we thought — a physicist explains

“You are able to do it rapidly, you are able to do it cheaply, or you are able to do it proper. We did it proper.” These had been a number of the opening remarks from David Toback, chief of the Collider Detector at Fermilab, as he introduced the outcomes of a decadelong experiment to measure the mass of a particle known as the W boson.

I’m a excessive power particle physicist, and I’m a part of the group of lots of of scientists that constructed and ran the Collider Detector at Fermilab in Illinois – referred to as CDF.

After trillions of collisions and years of knowledge assortment and quantity crunching, the CDF group discovered that the W boson has barely extra mass than anticipated. Although the discrepancy is tiny, the outcomes, described in a paper printed in Science on April 7, 2022, have electrified the particle physics world. If the measurement is right, it’s yet one more sturdy sign that there are lacking items to the physics puzzle of how the universe works.

A chart showing many particles.