Weak Interaction: The Four Fundamental Forces of Physics / Hank continues our series on the four fundamental forces of physics by describing the weak interaction, which operates at an infinitesimally small scale to cause particle decay.
The weak force is one of the four fundamental forces of nature, alongside the strong nuclear force, electromagnetism, and gravity. It is responsible for the radioactive decay of subatomic particles and initiates the process known as hydrogen fusion in stars. Weak interactions affect all known fermions. In the Standard Model of particle physics the weak interaction is theorised as being caused by the exchange (i.e., emission or absorption) of W and Z bosons.
Women in Science Wednesday! In 1963, Chien-shiung Wu (1912-1997 was considered one of the world's foremost experimental physicists and her team's experiments confirmed the theory of sub-atomic behavior known as "weak interaction." #Groundbreaker
CKM matrix - In the standard model of particle physics, the Cabibbo–Kobayashi–Maskawa matrix (CKM matrix) is a unitary matrix, which contains information on the transitions in quark flavour during a weak interaction. Technically it describes the differences between quantum states of quarks when they propagate freely and when they take part in the weak interactions. On the picture transitions in quark flavour are illustrated such as the larger squares indicate more likely transitions
Carlo Rubbia 1984 Born: 31 March 1934, Gorizia, Italy Affiliation at the time of the award: CERN, Geneva, Switzerland Prize motivation: "for their decisive contributions to the large project, which led to the discovery of the field particles W and Z, communicators of weak interaction" Field: Experimental particle physics
Wu Chien-Shiung (1912-1997) was considered one of the world's foremost experimental physicists. She worked on the Manhattan Project for developing of the atom bomb and conducted an eponymous experiment, which contradicted one of the basic laws of physics- namely the conservation of parity. She proved that the "weak" interactions among decaying particles are not always symmetrical in nature. Her collegues were awarded the Nobel Prize in 1957.
The Strong Force; or strong interaction (strong nuclear force, or color force) is one of the four fundamental interactions of nature, the others being electromagnetism, the weak interaction and gravitation. At atomic scale, it is about 100 times stronger than electromagnetism, which in turn is orders of magnitude stronger than the weak force interaction and gravitation.