Hidden Worlds: Hunting for Quarks in Ordinary Matter

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Princeton University Press, 2003 - Science - 178 pages
2 Reviews

No one has ever seen a quark. Yet physicists seem to know quite a lot about the properties and behavior of these ubiquitous elementary particles. Here a top researcher introduces us to a fascinating but invisible realm that is part of our everyday life. Timothy Smith tells us what we know about quarks--and how we know it.

Though the quarks that make science headlines are typically laboratory creations generated under extreme conditions, most quarks occur naturally. They reside in the protons and neutrons that make up almost all of the universe's known matter, from human DNA to distant nebulae, from books and tables to neutron stars. Smith explains what these quarks are, how they act, and why physicists believe in them sight unseen. How do quarks arrange themselves? What other combinations can nature make? How do quarks hold nuclei together? What else is happening in their hidden worlds? It turns out that these questions can be answered using a few simple principles, such as the old standby: opposites attract. With these few principles, Smith shows how quarks dance around each other and explains what physicists mean when they refer to "up" and "down" quarks and talk about a quark's color, flavor, and spin.

Smith also explains how we know what we know about these oddly aloof particles, which are eternally confined inside larger particles. He explains how quark experiments are mounted and how massive accelerators, targets, and detectors work together to collect the data that scientists use to infer what quarks are up to.

A nonmathematical tour of the quark world, this book is written for students, educators, and all who enjoy scientific exploration--whether they seek a taste of subnuclear physics or just wonder about nature on the smallest of scales.

  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - fpagan - LibraryThing

Good sketch of the physics of nucleons (protons and neutrons, made of quarks), logically positioned between nuclear physics on the mundane side and high-energy physics on the exotic side. Read full review

Review: Hidden Worlds: Hunting for Quarks in Ordinary Matter

User Review  - Gary Levin - Goodreads

Quarks in a nut shell a must read! Read full review

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Contents

Hidden Worlds The Search for Quarks in Ordinary Matter
1
The Rise and Fall for the right reasons and Rise Again of the Quark Hypathesis
15
The Players and the Stage
33
The Nature of the Evidence
51
Measuring a Rainbow
68
Particle Taxonomy and Quark Soup
90
The Shape of Things
109
Three Quarks Plus
131
Digging a Little Deeper
148
A New Age of Exploration within the Hidden World
161
GLOSSARY
165
INDEX
175
Copyright

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Sample Chapter for Smith, tp: Hidden Worlds: Hunting for Quarks in ...
Sample Chapter for Hidden Worlds: Hunting for Quarks in Ordinary Matter by Smith, TP, published by Princeton University Press.
press.princeton.edu/ chapters/ s7344.html

<I>Hidden Worlds: Hunting for quarks in ordinary matter</I> by ...
Hidden Worlds: Hunting for quarks in ordinary matter by Timothy Paul Smith, Princeton University Press, £17. 95/$24. 95, ISBN 0691057737 Reviewed by Alan.
www.newscientist.com/ channel/ fundamentals/ mg17723845.800

ARPA: Should colour be loosed on the world …
Timothy Paul Smith Hidden Worlds: Hunting for Quarks in Ordinary Matter, New Jersey, Princeton University Press, 2003 (pp. 192). ...
www.australianreview.net/ digest/ 2005/ 04/ heathcote.html

Smith Timothy Paul: Hidden Worlds | ISBN: 9780691122410 ...
Though the quarks that make science headlines are typically laboratory creations generated under extreme conditions, most quarks occur naturally
www.bookfayre.cz/ books/ item/ 9780691122410.html.cs

About the author (2003)

Timothy Paul Smith is a Research Scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Bates Linear Accelerator Center and Research Professor at Dartmouth College.

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