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For the Public - High Energy Physics Tour

The Particle Zoo

Most people are used to a model of the structure of matter that involves three tiny particles: Protons, electrons, and neutrons. These particles fit neatly together to make a "solar system" atom where electrons fly around a larger central nucleus (made of protons and neutrons). While that is the picture presented in most middle school adn high school science classes, it is important to realize that it is also an incomplete picture of how our universe is structured. There are hundreds of other particles we now know exist, and the structure of atoms is no longer a simple notion of a small solar system. We will begin to take a look at the members of the particle zoo; there will be more of a focus on some of the key members that become important in such phenomena as cosmic rays and nuclear reactions.

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last modified 7/19/2001   email CDF
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