A new particle accelerator, Spiral2, was launched in Caen, France, with the purpose of finding which are the origins of the atomic nucleus, to decipher the substance and existence’s secrets, according to some materials published by AFP and RFI. After a long period of time when it was believed that the atoms are the smallest parts (indivisible) of the substance, at present it is known that they are formed from the electrons that orbit around a nuclear core that is composed from protons and neutrons. But, where these cores come from and how they form? What are the forces governing their behavior.
These are the questions to which the scientists hope to receive a response after the experiments that will take part within the particles accelerator Spiral2. The atomic nucleus was discovered in 1911, and its constituent parts after almost twenty years. After all this time, the scientists still know very little about these cores, which are approximately 10,000 times smaller than the atoms to which they belong. According to an analogy, if a cathedral is an atom, then the nucleus of this atom has the dimensions comparable with those of a fly from the cathedral.
The density of a such nucleus, reported to the density of the whole atom, is remarkable: as if the fly would have 99.9 % of the mass of the entire cathedral. To study these parts of the atoms, within the experiment with the Spiral2, a project with a budget of 138 million euros, will be compiled and examined the so-called ‘exotic cores’, which are formed in the stellar nuclear furnaces which cannot be found in the natural way on Earth, but which can be artificially obtained in particle accelerators. The scientists want to understand the way in which these fundamental parts of the substance are produced under extreme temperature and pressure from inside the stars.