The Large Hadon Collider doesn’t create anything new. It creates an observable environment for things that already exist to be witnessed. This week CERN, which runs the LHC, reported the discovery of pentaquarks, a class of particles previously unverified. Pentaquarks are subatomic particles with four quarks and one antiquark. The existence of the pentaquark was suspected by scientists, but identifying a pentaquark had been an elusive quest until recently.
The pentaquark “represents a way to aggregate quarks, namely the fundamental constituents of ordinary protons and neutrons, in a pattern that has never been observed before in over fifty years of experimental searches.” according to LHCb spokesperson Guy Wilkinson. For physicists, the discovery is a beautiful thing. For the rest of us, on whom perhaps the beauty might be lost, the CERN artists have provided a beautiful visual representation (see above).