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Date:11/13/2012

>(forthcoming)

By measuring the decay of certain subatomic particles called B- mesons, scientists have found the first evidence that, even at the microscopic level, time flows in a preferred direction.

While most things in the macroscopic world only get older, many of the fundamental laws of physics are perfectly time-symmetric: according to the standard model most physical process can be "rewound" to go exactly back to where they started. According to theory, an exception is the electroweak interaction, the force responsible for the radioactive decay of nuclear subatomic particles. The BaBar collaboration at the SLAC National Acceleration Laboratory at Stanford has now proven this experimentally. BaBar compared the decay of B-mesons, running the process in both the forward and backward direction. The result showed that the decay is different in the two cases, providing the first direct experimental evidence for the violation of time reversal symmetry.


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Contact: Matteo Rini
mrini@aps.org
631-591-4224
American Physical Society
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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