A quark is a type of elementary particle and a fundamental constituent of matter. Quarks combine to form composite particles called hadrons, the most stable of which are protons and neutrons, the components of atomic nuclei.
All matter is made up of small particles called atoms. These atoms are very tiny particles and cannot be seen with the named eye. Atoms are made up of still smaller particles called electrons, protons and neutrons, which are known as sub-atomic or elementary particles.
Physicists have discovered hundreds of other elementary particles such as mesons, muon, neutrino and positron. Can you imagine a particle even smaller than these elementary particles?
A few years ago, scientists discovered that elementary particles are made up of extremely small particles called quarks. So far quarks are only hypothetical particles and have not been observed in experiments. With the exception of protons, electrons, muons and neutrino, all elementary particles are made up of different quarks. This idea was suggested in 1964, by two American physicists, Murray Gell-Mann and George Zweig
There are six known kinds of quarks, carrying a fractional charge. Each has an anti-particle called anti-quark. Quarks are the only fundamental particles that interact through
all four of the fundamental forces. Quarks come in six flavours: Up, Down, Strange, Charm, Bottom and Top. Isolated quarks are never found naturally. They are always found in groups of two (mesons) or three (baryons) called hadrons.
The charges of the six quarks are +2/3,-1/3, -1/3, +2/3, -1/3 and +2/3 that of the electron charge.
Anti-quarks have opposite charges.
All quarks and anti-quarks have equal spin, which is 1/2.
These quarks combine to form different elementary particles. For example, protons are composed of three quarks and neutrons also of three quarks.
#quarks #atoms #neutron
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