It has long been recognized that there are four "fundamental forces" governing nature.
The substance of our universe is separated or separated by these forces, which are determined by the fact that it seems that they cannot be reduced to the most basic interactions between particles.
They include gravitational and electromagnetic forces, which produce significant long-range interactions whose effects we can see directly in everyday life.
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They also include forces known as strong interactions and weak interactions, which produce forces at short, subatomic distances and govern nuclear physics.
There have been many unsubstantiated claims over the years about the existence of the Fifth Core Force, and as the long hunt for dark matter continues to be futile, efforts to find new forces in the game to fill the shortcomings of the standard model of particle physics cannot be explained.
Dark matter is a theoretical substance that is estimated to account for about 85 percent of all mass in space, but has not yet been reported.
But now, scientists at the Hungarian Atomic Nuclear Research Institute believe they may have found stronger evidence of a hitherto unknown fifth fundamental force of nature.
Attila Krasznahorkay and his Atomki colleagues first reported some surprising results in 2015 after studying the light emitted during the radioactive decay of beryllium-8, an unstable isotope.
The discovery of beryllium-8 in the 1930s after the construction of the first one particle accelerator in Cambridge, the existence of this unstable atom and the unique mode of decay have been the focus of numerous studies related to stellar nucleosynthesis – how nuclear fusion in stars forms elements.
In 2015, they discovered that upon firing a proton onto the lithium-7 isotope, which produces beryllium-8, the subsequent decay of the particles did not produce exactly the expected light emission and that a specific tiny "shock" occurred, meaning for an inexplicable reason, the electrons and the positrons, which decayed as the atom collapsed, often pushed away from each other at exactly 140 degrees.
Various meetings in the same laboratory confirmed the results, and a year later the same experiment was repeated, with the same results in America.
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It is thought that at the time of an atom's decay, excessive energy among its constituents briefly creates a new unknown particle, which almost immediately decays into a recognizable pair of positrons and electrons.
But not all of us are turned on the inside or flattened into another dimension. An unknown particle, described as a "protophobic X boson", is thought to carry a force that acts at microscopic distances not much larger than the atomic nucleus.
A "boson" is a particle that can carry force.
The particle was named X17 because its mass is calculated at 17 megaelectronvolts.
But Dr. Krasznahorkay now believes they measured the same results in stable helium atoms, however, instead of electrons and positrons in helium atoms separating at 140 degrees, the angle was closer to 115 degrees.
"This feature is similar to the anomaly observed in 8Be, and seems to coincide with the boson X17 decay scenario," the team writes in arXiv, where the study was published but not yet reviewed.
If the existence of particles is confirmed, it means that physicists will have to finally re-examine the interactions of the existing four fundamental forces of particle physics and make room for a fifth.
"We expect more independent experimental results for X17 particles in the coming years," the research team concludes.