Improved search for elementary particles with fractional electric charge

Nancy M. Mar, Eric R. Lee, George R. Fleming, Brendan C K Casey, Martin L. Perl, Edward L. Garwin, Charles D. Hendricks, Klaus Lackner, Gordon L. Shaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have devised and demonstrated the successful operation of a low-cost, high-mass throughput technique capable of performing bulk matter searches for fractionally charged particles based on an improved Millikan liquid drop method. The method uses a stroboscopic lamp and a charge coupled device video camera to image the trajectories of silicone oil drops falling through air in the presence of a vertical, alternating electric field. The images of the trajectories are computer processed in real time, the electric charge on a drop being measured with an rms error of 0.025 of an electron charge. This error is dominated by Brownian motion. In the first use of this method, we have looked at 5 974 941 drops and found no evidence for fractional charges in 1.07 mg of oil. With 95% confidence, the concentration of isolated quarks with ±1/3e or ±2/3e in silicone oil is less than one per 2.14×1020 nucleons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6017-6032
Number of pages16
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Volume53
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 1996
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Elementary Particles
elementary particles
electric charge
Fractional
oils
Charge
silicones
trajectories
Trajectory
falling
nucleons
Charge-coupled Device
luminaires
confidence
charge coupled devices
charged particles
cameras
quarks
Confidence
Brownian motion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mathematical Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Mar, N. M., Lee, E. R., Fleming, G. R., Casey, B. C. K., Perl, M. L., Garwin, E. L., ... Shaw, G. L. (1996). Improved search for elementary particles with fractional electric charge. Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology, 53(11), 6017-6032.

Improved search for elementary particles with fractional electric charge. / Mar, Nancy M.; Lee, Eric R.; Fleming, George R.; Casey, Brendan C K; Perl, Martin L.; Garwin, Edward L.; Hendricks, Charles D.; Lackner, Klaus; Shaw, Gordon L.

In: Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology, Vol. 53, No. 11, 01.06.1996, p. 6017-6032.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Mar, NM, Lee, ER, Fleming, GR, Casey, BCK, Perl, ML, Garwin, EL, Hendricks, CD, Lackner, K & Shaw, GL 1996, 'Improved search for elementary particles with fractional electric charge', Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology, vol. 53, no. 11, pp. 6017-6032.
Mar NM, Lee ER, Fleming GR, Casey BCK, Perl ML, Garwin EL et al. Improved search for elementary particles with fractional electric charge. Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology. 1996 Jun 1;53(11):6017-6032.
Mar, Nancy M. ; Lee, Eric R. ; Fleming, George R. ; Casey, Brendan C K ; Perl, Martin L. ; Garwin, Edward L. ; Hendricks, Charles D. ; Lackner, Klaus ; Shaw, Gordon L. / Improved search for elementary particles with fractional electric charge. In: Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology. 1996 ; Vol. 53, No. 11. pp. 6017-6032.
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