How a walk through CERN's corridors helped lead to the discovery of the gluon 40 years ago

phys.org | 6/1/2015 | Staff
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Forty years ago, in 1979, experiments at the DESY laboratory in Germany provided the first direct proof of the existence of gluons—the carriers of the strong force that "glue" quarks into protons, neutrons and other particles known collectively as hadrons. This discovery was a milestone in the history of particle physics, as it helped establish the theory of the strong force, known as quantum chromodynamics.

The results followed from an idea that struck theorist John Ellis while walking in CERN's corridors in 1976. As Ellis recounts, he was walking over the bridge from the CERN cafeteria back to his office, turning the corner by the library, when it occurred to him that "the simplest experimental situation to search directly for the gluon would be through production via bremsstrahlung in electron–positron annihilation." In this process, an electron and a positron (the electron's antiparticle) would annihilate and would occasionally produce three "jets" of particles, one of which being generated by a gluon radiated by a quark–antiquark pair.

Ellis - Theorists - Mary - Gaillard - Graham

Ellis and theorists Mary Gaillard and Graham Ross then went on to write a paper titled "Search for Gluons in e+-e– Annihilation" in which they described...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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