In addition to the four fundamental forces of nature, gravity, electromagnetic force, and weak and strong nuclear forces, a fifth force of nature that explains dark matter might have been found during an experiment in Hungary, according to mnn.com.
“If the existence of the protophobic gauge boson is confirmed, this would have an enormous impact on particle physics… A fifth force would… force us to reconsider our theoretical assumptions. Not to mention possible practical applications of the fifth force, for example in the development of new technologies,” stated Bartosz Fornal, a postdoctoral scholar in theoretical particle physics at UC Irvine.
During an experiment on the possibility of a cause of dark matter called “dark photons,” everything was going expected until excess subatomic particles were emitted by a particle 34 times heavier than an electron meaning an undiscovered force was at work, as stated in scienceworldreport.com.
The Hungarian team’s claim was ignored until Jonathan Feng, a physicist at the University of California, and his colleagues looked into their claim and found nothing wrong with the experiment or conclusion, reported gizmodo.com.
“Actually, I was the one who discovered the original paper on the Hungarian experiment, pretty much by chance, and brought it to the attention of my group… I actually stumbled upon this paper using Google Search… Although this paper was completely unrelated to my original research target, it got me very interested,” Fornal reported.
Since the results have not underwent peer-review, interest and excitement are restrained and there is some hesitation and doubt, as stated in scienceworldreport.com.
“But it’s a promising discovery that could finally help theorists to better understand the vexing nature of dark matter — the mysterious substance that supposedly makes up around 80 percent of the mass in the galaxy but which can’t be seen,” reported mnn.com.
“Dark matter is one of the biggest mysteries of the Universe… We have many indirect evidence for its existence and we suspect that is consists of some kind of unknown particle, but it has never been seen in any experiment,” Fornal stated.
“Constructing a complete theory involving the fifth force will require postulating additional matter particles, some of which might turn out to be good dark matter candidates. Actually, this is exactly what we are currently working on at UC Irvine,” he added.
Researchers in the United States and Europe are testing this theory and expect to prove the results right or wrong in about a year, according to gizmodo.com.