To this day, physicists have discovered four known forces of nature: gravity, electromagnetism, the strong nuclear force, and the weak nuclear force.
Now, scientists from Hungary claim to have found a fifth force emerging from a helium atom. This discovery could help unravel the mystery of dark matter.
The findings have been published in pre-print server arXiv, but are still waiting to be peer reviewed.
This is not the first time physicists think they've found a new force
In 2016, scientists from Hungary's Institute for Nuclear Research, or Atomki, published a paper in the journal Physical Review Letters, with details of their evidence that a previously unknown force was part of the radioactive decay of the beryllium-8 isotope.
Scientists Think They Just Discovered The Fifth Force Of Nature – UNILAD https://t.co/loZw1vUAOA— Headline News (@Headlinenews247) November 21, 2019
Now, some of the same scientists from Atomki have published their new findings of a potential fifth force of nature. Researcher Attila Krasznahorkay, who was also part of the 2016 findings, and his team were the ones to make the new discovery.
Their findings carry on from the 2016 discovery. The team believes to have seen a second example of the mysterious force at play, as well as the particle they believe to be carrying it, they're calling it X17.
Fifth force has long been rumored to exist, scientists just couldn’t prove it. Until now. Maybe ¯\_(ツ)_/¯https://t.co/UMy5fGcAc3— RT (@RT_com) November 20, 2019
The team found pairs of electrons and positrons separating at a specific angle of 115 degrees, this angle doesn't match currently accepted models.
The X17 particle is a long way from being an official particle. Following thorough peer review though, if this discovery becomes confirmed, X17 could help us better understand the forces that govern our Universe.