Wednesday, October 3, 2012

'Tunneling of the third kind' experiment could search for new physics

'Tunneling of the third kind' experiment could search for new physics: In tunneling of the third kind, a quantum particle that cannot pass through a barrier changes into a pair of virtual particles that pass through the barrier before changing back into the first particle. Gies, along with coauthor Joerg Jaeckel, discovered this kind of tunneling in 2009. They suggested that this tunneling could take the form of photons changing into MCPs, which can tunnel through certain barriers and then change back into photons. Like the second kind of tunneling, this kind would also appear as light shining through a wall...

In the proposed experimental set-up, a photon travels toward a perfectly opaque wall up to 1.8 cm thick, and behind the wall is a photon detector. The wall is installed in the 0.28-meter-diameter bore of a 1.2-meter-diameter solenoid magnet that provides a very large field strength of 5 Tesla. The large field strength enhances the potential for detecting very low-mass particles such as MCPs as photons appear to pass through the wall.

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