Axion particle spotted in solid-state crystal

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids in Dresden, Princeton University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences have spotted a ...

Weyl fermions discovered in another class of materials

A particular kind of elementary particle, the Weyl fermions, were first discovered a few years ago. Their specialty: they move through a material in a well ordered manner that practically never lets them collide with each ...

New material shows high potential for quantum computing

A joint team of scientists at the University of California, Riverside, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is getting closer to confirming the existence of an exotic quantum particle called Majorana fermion, crucial ...

Computing faster with quasi-particles

Majorana particles are very peculiar members of the family of elementary particles. First predicted in 1937 by the Italian physicist Ettore Majorana, these particles belong to the group of so-called fermions, a group that ...

New material also reveals new quasiparticles

Researchers at PSI have investigated a novel crystalline material that exhibits electronic properties that have never been seen before. It is a crystal of aluminum and platinum atoms arranged in a special way. In the symmetrically ...

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Fermion

In particle physics, a fermion (named after Enrico Fermi) is any particle which obeys the Fermi–Dirac statistics (and follows the Pauli exclusion principle). Fermions contrast with bosons which obey Bose–Einstein statistics.

A fermion can be an elementary particle, such as the electron; or it can be a composite particle, such as the proton. The spin-statistics theorem holds that, in any reasonable relativistic quantum field theory, particles with integer spin are bosons, while particles with half-integer spin are fermions.

In contrast to bosons, only one fermion can occupy a particular quantum state at any given time. If more than one fermion occupies the same physical space, at least one property of each fermion, such as its spin, must be different. Fermions are usually associated with matter, whereas bosons are generally force carrier particles; although in the current state of quantum physics the distinction between the two concepts is unclear.

The Standard Model recognizes two types of elementary fermions: quarks and leptons. In all, the model distinguishes 24 different fermions: 6 quarks and 6 leptons, each with a corresponding anti-particle.

Composite fermions, such as protons and neutrons, are key building blocks of matter. Weakly interacting fermions can also display bosonic behavior under extreme conditions, such as in superconductivity.

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