Particle Zoo

The Standard Model

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Gauge Bosons

Gauge bosons are elementary particles, the exchange particles of the four fundamental interactions of nature. They interact with other particles and so take influence in them. Actually, gauge bosons should be massless, which is true for photons, gluons and probably gravitons. W bosons and Z bosons, according to the best established theory, get their mass from the still hypothetical Higgs particle.
The graviton is still hypothetical, too, but the effects of gravitation are obvious. Nevertheless, gravitation, which by far is the weakest of the four, is the one which is most difficult to explain. For the other three forces, weak and strong interaction and electromagnetism, there are promising approaches to unite them. In the Grand Unified Theories (GUT), those three forces are only different aspects of one single force. If it was possible to include gravitation, it would be a theory of everything. This is tried, but the main problem is to consistently reconcile quantum-mechanics and gravitation.



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