Particle Physics

Particle physics probes the basic building blocks of matter and their interactions, which determine the structure and properties of the extreme diversity of matter in the universe. It aims at explaining what holds the world together in its most fundamental constituents.

Proton-Proton Collision (LHC, CERN)
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Proton-Proton Collision (LHC, CERN)
Proton-Proton Collision (LHC, CERN)

Modern physics relies on an elegant «Standard Model of particle physics», a quantum field theory based on three symmetries and a symmetry breaking. This theory describes and explains magnificently all experimental results obtained so far. With the discovery of the Higgs particle in 2012 at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, the last missing piece of the Standard Model has been experimentally confirmed. Experiments at CERN and at other international laboratories now continue to test the validity and limits of the Standard Model in ever widening scope. However, for a comprehensive understanding of the laws of nature a theory beyond the Standard Model is needed, which should include gravitation and explain the presence of dark matter and dark energy in the universe.

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ETH graduate student Michal Rawlik with the small ‘prototype cage’, which serves to neutralize the magnetic fields in its interior. Photo: B. Vogel
  • 10.11.2017
  • CHIPP
  • news
  • Press release

A Touch of Magnetism

This fall at the Paul Scherrer Institute, the construction of a new particle physics experiment will begin to determine the electric dipole of the neutron. It will replace a previous experiment, which has performed the so far most sensitive measurement in recent years and for which data evaluation is still ongoing. The new experiment, co-developed by ETH Ph.D. student Michał Rawlik, can detect almost inconceivably small features of magnetism. A successful outcome of the experiment would help explain why there is so much more matter in the universe than antimatter.
Scene from the movie 'Particle Fever': Fabiola Gianotti (at the time speaker of the ATLAS experiment at CERN) in a discussion with a colleague.
  • 18.10.2017
  • SDA
  • Press release

Physik: CERN stellt neuen Rekord bei Messung des Antiprotons auf

CERN-Forschende haben das magnetische Moment des Antiprotons so präzise gemessen wie nie zuvor. Die Genauigkeit übertraf dabei sogar die bei der entsprechenden Vermessung des Protons.
Blicke ins BASE-Experiment am CERN. Foto: BASE Collaboration
  • 18.10.2017
  • CHIPP
  • news

An Unimaginably Sharp Image of Antiprotons

Researchers of the Baryon-Antibaryon-Symmetry experiment (BASE) at CERN have achieved a remarkable success: They have determined the magnetic moment of the antiproton with a previously unattained accuracy. The measurement is more precise than the best measurement for the magnetic moment of the proton.

Swiss physicists in dialog with the society

Swiss physicists want to make their fascinating research understandable to the interested public and to debate its meaning for our society together with representatives of other fields.