093 – The Standard Model of Particle Physics

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This is the first episode in a series of episodes on particle physics and related research at CERN. In this episode we are talking to John Ellis about the standard model of particle physics, which is the current “big picture” about how subatomic matter and fields work.

18 Responses to 093 – The Standard Model of Particle Physics

  1. Quite a lot to understand, but did I overhear or did John not answer whether Spin means that particles are actually spinning?

  2. MaNo says:

    Yes, this one is a bit heavier than the “wow, cool aiplane”-style episodes :-)

    As far as I remember he said that Spin is not intended to be interpreted literally. No turning and spinning going on there.


  3. Chris says:

    Great interview, but I was thinking the same: I really wanted to learn what is meant by the ‘spin’ of a fundamental particle’. Clearly it isn’t a physical spin, but exactly what does it represent. Anyway, thank you Markus. I’ve wondered about the Fine Structure Constant for years and this helps a little!

  4. MaNo says:

    Here is what Wikipedia says:

    As the name suggests, spin was originally conceived as the rotation of a particle around some axis. This picture is correct so far as spins obey the same mathematical laws as quantized angular momenta do. On the other hand, spins have some peculiar properties that distinguish them from orbital angular momenta:

    • Spin quantum numbers may take on half-odd-integer values;
    • Although the direction of its spin can be changed, an elementary particle cannot be made to spin faster or slower.
    • The spin of a charged particle is associated with a magnetic dipole moment with a g-factor differing from 1. This could only occur classically if the internal charge of the particle were distributed differently from its mass.

    Does this help :-) ?


  5. iota says:

    Puh! Rauchwölkchen entsteigen meinem Eiweißcomputer…
    Wieder eine tolle Folge mit einem super Gesprächspartner, der dies an für sich “unverständliche” oder besser “unanschauliche” Thema m.E. so gut es geht dem geneigten Hörer nahe bringen konnte.
    Ich muss es mir einfach noch Mal in Ruhe anhören, für nebenher beim Auto fahren ist es doch etwas zu hirnverknotend…
    Ich freue mich schon – wie wir Schwaben sagen: “saumäßig” – auf die weiteren Folgen!


  6. frosch03 says:

    i’m so happy, that you’re doing this series on theoretical physics issues, thanks :)

    btw, this short video on the higgs-boson might also be interesting

  7. Rick Pontefract says:

    Another excellent podcast. Thanks for being a source of informative and interesting listening.

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  9. Richard Bland says:

    Compact but clear – a very helpful tour of the position at the point of recording. Recent reports of a ‘Higgs like’ particle at 5 sigma suggest that an update will soon be needed.

  10. MaNo says:

    I might do an update, but not any time soon.

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  13. Rocco Erne says:

    A great episode and I look forward to the others. I’ve listened #93 two times and understand even more. Thanks for Omega Tau.

  14. MaNo says:

    Thanks :-)

  15. Anna Harry says:

    I would like to suggest a youtube link: String theory is simplified now.

  16. Christoph says:

    Great episode! Thanks a lot to John Ellis.

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