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A most important milestone in the direct measurement of the magnetic moment of the proton and its anti-particle has been achieved.


Researchers at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and the Helmholtz Institute Mainz (HIM), together with their colleagues from the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg and the GSI Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research in Darmstadt, have observed spin quantum-jumps with a single trapped proton for the first time. The result is a pioneering step forward in the endeavor to directly measure the magnetic properties of the proton with high precision. The measuring principle is based on the observation of a single proton stored in an electromagnetic particle trap. As it would also be possible to observe an anti-proton using the same method, the prospect that an explanation for the matter-antimatter imbalance in the universe could be found has become a reality. It is essential to be able to analyze antimatter in detail if we are to understand why matter and antimatter did not completely cancel each other out after the Big Bang - in other words, if we are to comprehend how the universe actually came into existence.

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Category: Science