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Subatomic Wobble Stuns Scientists, Challenges Laws Of Physics

Preliminary results from an international science experiment this week sent shock waves through the world of physics, and it’s all due to a tiny particle’s surprising wobble.

Scientists have spent decades trying to get a closer look at muons — subatomic particles that blip in and out of existence in a matter of microseconds. On Wednesday, scientists at Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois, revealed evidence that muons wobble in a way that goes against the longstanding Standard Model of particle physics.

The extra motion could be the fingerprint of something unknown to science.

“There might be monsters we haven’t yet imagined that are emerging from the vacuum, interacting with our muons, and this gives us a window into seeing them,” said the experiment’s co-chief scientist, Chris Polly.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.