The Building Blocks of Matter | Sub-Atomic Particles
Elementary particles are the building blocks of matter. All the objects that we see in our daily life like vehicles, mobile phones, home appliances, and other things are made up of atoms. When the matter is not formed, atoms are not visible.
Atoms form different types of elements. There are many elements that are not visible to human eyes. To make the matter visible to the eyes, it is required to break down the matter into smaller pieces called elements.
The Building Blocks of Matter
If you look at glass, the visible matter is made up of different materials, and the invisible material of the glass is actually called atoms. Atoms are formed of subatomic particles which are called protons, neutrons, and electrons.
Protons have positive charges, neutrons have no charge and electrons have negative charges. These three particles formed the atomic nucleus. When these three particles are joined together they create a central core which is the atom. The particles that are surrounded by the central core are called electrons.
Protons, neutrons, and electrons are the basic building blocks of matter. Other substances like oxygen, nitrogen, carbon, hydrogen, sulphur, etc. are made up of these basic building blocks.
Sub-atomic particles are divided into three groups.
Elementary particles are the basic building blocks of matter.
- All photons and leptons are elementary particles
- Hadrons are not elementary particles but are composed of elementary particles called quarks. Scientists now believe that all matter belongs to either the quark group or the lepton.
Leptons are particles that do not experience strong nuclear force. In addition to protons, neutrons and mesons are hadrons.
- The particles equal in mass or greater than protons are called baryons.
- The particles lighter than protons are called mesons.
Leptons are particles that do not experience strong nuclear force.
Electron, muons and neutrinos are leptons
According to the quark theory initiated by M. Gell-Mann and G. Zweig, the quarks are proposed as the basic building blocks of the mesons and baryons. A pair of quarks and an anti-quark make a meson and 3 quarks make a baryon. It is proposed that there are six quarks, the
(1) Up quark
(2) Down quark
(3) Strange quark
(4) Charm quark
(5) Bottom quark
(6) Top-down quark
A proton is assumed to be made up of two up quarks and one down quark neutron is assumed to be made of one up quark and two down quarks.
Currently, the hundred of hadrons can be accounted for in terms of six quark and their anti-quarks. It is believed that quarks cannot exist on their own t existence has been indirectly verified.