Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Strangelets do not exist on the Moon

Physics Today Blog

Science: The moon isn't made of green cheese and almost certainly doesn't harbor hypothetical particles called "strangelets," an analysis of lunar soil has shown. The result undermines a possible strangelet sighting a decade ago and strengthens the case that the bizarre particles, which protesters once feared might emerge from an atom smasher and consume Earth, don't exist.

"I'm not surprised," says Frank Wilczek, a theorist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge. "It would be a great discovery to find strangelets, but the theoretical case for them is pretty shaky." Still, he says, "it's not crazy" to look for them.

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