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Jim Hirschauer | USLHC | USA

View Blog | Read Bio

But what are quarks made of?

The pressure is on.  I have read and enjoyed the US LHC blogs off and on for the past couple years, and so I was thrilled to be offered a chance to join the ranks of these entertaining and informative writers.  Now that it comes time for my first post, I admit that I am wracked with anxiety.  Whatever academic writing skills I may possess will be of little use to me here, right?

Abstract: A new LHC blogger is introduced.  His research is described …

See? It doesn’t work.  So I suppose that, to get over my anxiety related to this first post, I will stick to a subject that I know very well: my own research!  Here it goes …

The remarkable success of the LHC and the experiments that reside on its ring [including my experiment, the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS)] have made this an exciting time to be at CERN.  I have had the opportunity to help lead an exceptional group of researchers in a study of the early CMS data; this work has resulted in one of the first CMS publications based on data from 7 TeV proton-proton collisions.

To introduce this research, I’ll start with a little history:

We humans have been searching for the smallest unit of matter for a long time.  About 2500 years ago, Democritus proposed that all matter is made of tiny, indivisible (“atomos”) entities.  Unfortunately, Democritus was way ahead of his time, and even 2300 years after his hypothesis, we still did not know whether atoms really existed.  Finally, around 1800, Dalton and others realized that the elements combine in only certain proportions implying that there is a fundamental unit of each element; i.e., each element is made up of atoms.  Dalton’s atomic theory was a great advance, but it didn’t explain why there are so many (about 50, at the time) different elements.  The human tendency to categorize when presented with variety brought us Mendeleev’s Periodic Table of the Elements:

The Periodic Table of Chemical Elements


The fact that the elements fit nicely into a table based on their weights and chemical properties suggested that the elemental atoms are actually just different combinations of even smaller entities.  Only a few decades after Mendeleev presented his table, humans observed these sub-atomic entities when Thomson discovered the electron (1897), Rutherford the atomic nucleus (1910), and Chadwick the neutron (1932).

Soon after the discovery of the neutron, discoveries of particles that didn’t fit into our simple atomic model (e.g. pion, kaon, Lambda) hinted that a revision of that model was needed.  In the 1960’s, Gell-Mann suggested that these new particles, as well as protons and neutrons, were actually entries in another periodic table which he called the “Eightfold Way.”

The baryon octet of Gell-Mann's Eightfold Way.


Just as we now understand the diverse elements to be combinations of only three particles (protons, neutrons, and electrons), the Eightfold Way explained protons, neutrons, kaons, pions, etc. as combinations of particles that we now call quarks.  Only five years after Gell-Mann proposed his theory, these quarks were observed at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center.

And this is where it stands today.  As far as we know, quarks are indivisible; i.e., quarks are the smallest unit matter in the nucleus.  But wait!  We do observe there to be six quarks arranged in three generations:

I know what you’re thinking:  But this is another table!  This looks just like the Periodic Table or the Eightfold Way!   Isn’t this therefore a hint that even quarks (and leptons) are made up of something smaller still?

That is certainly a very reasonable guess, but only experiment can tell us for sure, and unfortunately, it gets progressively more difficult to see these small particles: roughly speaking, the atom is one million times smaller than a human hair, and the proton is 100,000 time smaller than the atom.   Our current understanding is that the quark is a point-like particle with no spatial extent!

My recent research focuses on searching for evidence that quarks are made up of even smaller stuff by probing these tiny distance scales.   The unprecedented energy of the LHC allows us to probe smaller distances than ever before: about 1/20,000 the size of the proton.   In my next post, I’ll describe how we actually do this and tell you what we have found.

  • Hi Jim! Welcome to the blog!

  • PJ

    Thanks for posting this. I have been following this blog and have enjoyed reading the posts and seeing everyone’s excitement with the work being done and the discoveries being made. From as far back as I can remember I have always be interested in finding out how things work. This is the ultimate “how things work” experiment. I think that I missed my calling 20 some years ago when I decided to drop out of college and peruse a career in IT. I’ve Only recently discovered my complete fascination with particle physics (at least as much as one can understand with out the education.) Anyhoo…I found this post to be greatly helpful in my understanding of these elementary particles. there is a lot of information out there on this stuff, but you did a great job of putting it plainly. Thank You.

  • Simon

    Jim: an elegant and simple first post! Eagerly anticipating your frequent articles.

  • Jim-Very nice, I have been looking for a nicely sized Periodic Table for quite some time. I enjoy your writing. I hope that you stick around for a while. If you get a chance, check out my blog,


    The blog is dedicated to raising the visibility of the US contribution to worldwide scientific research.

  • Don M.

    Thanks Jim, all of you US/LHC bloggers are, in my opinion, amazing! I’am in my mid 70’s with no (nada) physics background (well maybe a “B” in high school), and you bloggers have made the CERN experiments somewhat understandable and definitely interesting.

    Thanks again to all, Don

  • Don M.

    OK Jim, first dumb question. If something has “no spatial extent”, how do we get something (i.e a proton) from what I assume is nothing? It it possible that quarks are really “energy types” that that turn into something in certain combinations?


  • Jeff Mahr

    Thank you for such a plain language explanation! I have been following this blog off and on for a while, and while very interesting, the posts tend to be over my head when it comes to the science…I still don’t know what all those experiments are looking for (and to the other posters – please don’t stop, this is a frustration born of my ignorance). I am sure you are aware of this, but there are a whole lot of people keeping on eye on things over there, waiting for “the” announcement. My co-workers and I (we teach Biology at a community college) are really excited by this, but its funny that when we go to talk about specifics (“what are they really looking for”) none of us has a clue (proof of dark matter? anti particles? pieces of quarks? gravitons?). We have no clue what “the” announcement would be about. Anyhow, a plain-english description of the different experiments would be awesome (and devoured I am sure), however I am aware that there may be other things occupying your time (preventing black holes? developing next generation cloaking devices? turning lead into gold?). Thanks again.

  • Joe Tuggle

    Go Jim! Way to generate some comments. 🙂

  • Stephen Brooks

    Don M.: quantum theory does this because in it, “point particles” are actually probability distributions that may be spread through a finite amount of space. The size of an electron orbital in an atom is determined from the strength of the force attracting it to the nucleus.

    Also on the periodic table, 110 = Uun not Unn

  • can i use above periodic table for assignment?

  • U.M.

    How will I use this in real life?

  • peassse

    Use your brain.

  • Jim Hirschauer

    Hi Don,

    Thanks very much for your kind words. This is an excellent question.

    First let me clarify one possibly misleading statement that I made: We don’t know whether the quark (or electron) has zero radius or just a really, really small radius. Our current theory assumes that they have zero radius, but if we discover that to be false, we will change the theory. (We assume zero radius for now because it is simple and there is no evidence to the contrary.) However, even if quarks and electrons really are point particles with no spatial extent, that doesn’t imply that they are “nothing.” Indeed, we have already experimentally observed that these particles have other well-defined properties such as mass and electric charge.

    We know that the proton has some physical size because Hofstadter measured it in the 1950’s. We have also been trying to determine whether the electron and quark have spatial extent (or are made up of smaller particles), but so far we have been unsuccessful. For instance, we currently can only conclude that, if the electron has a non-zero radius, it must be smaller than 1/10,000,000 the radius of the proton. I’ll write more about how we do this in my next post.

    So to conclude: we would say that quarks are elementary particles [with mass, charge, and undetectable (possibly zero) radius] which combine to make up protons, neutrons, pions, etc.

    I hope this helps.



  • Jim Hirschauer

    Hi Stephen,

    Thanks for your interest. You are absolutely correct that the position (or momentum, etc.) of any particle is described by a probability amplitude or wave function in quantum mechanics (QM).

    You are also correct that the QM nature of composite particles (particles that are made up of other particles) like protons and atoms complicates the measurement of their size. It would be nice if the notion of the “radius of the proton” were concrete, but because of QM, it is the root-mean-square charge radius of the proton that is experimentally accessible. Similarly, if we want to discuss the size of an atom, we find ourselves thinking about the fuzzy boundary described by the electron orbital that you mention.

    Let me clarify one thing you mentioned and in the process cross (or at least tread close to) the border between physics and philosophy: The probabilistic description of the position of the electron doesn’t imply that the electron has non-zero radius. The electron orbital tells us the probability of finding the electron in an atom at a given position. The probability of finding the electron anywhere in a one-Angstrom neighborhood about the nucleus is about 100%, but that doesn’t mean that the electron radius is one Angstrom.

    Thanks again for your helpful comments.



    P.S. I have NO idea what the name of element 110 is. 🙂 Wikipedia confirms that the symbol for Ununnilium should be Uun, not Unn. In any case, the element is now formally named Darmstadtium (Ds).

  • Jim Hirschauer

    Hi Alexander, Richard, and anyone else looking for a periodic table,

    I took this image from http://www.elementsdatabase.com/ where they write:
    “Our periodic table information can be useful for chemistry and physics students, as well as science researchers.” So I think it is fine to use. Please notice the mistake pointed out by Stephen Brooks: element 110 should be Uun or Ds, but not Unn.



  • Jim Hirschauer

    Hi U.M.,

    Great question!

    I agree that a direct application of fundamental research like that performed at the LHC is not immediately obvious. However, the history of science is teeming with seemingly abstract discoveries resulting in practical technologies. One of my favorite examples is Einstein’s general theory of relativity: When the theory was first published in 1915, it’s unlikely anyone envisioned it would be crucial to an important technology in the short term, but only 60 years later the Global Positioning System (GPS), for which knowledge of relativity is absolutely necessary, was under development. Without corrections for the effects of relativity, GPS measurements of position would stray from the actual position by about 10 km per day!

    Thanks for posting.



  • Polly Putnam

    Thank you so much for this. It actually helped me understand things that I thought I never, ever would. It’s all so exciting!


  • Very nice, Jim!

  • When speaking of quarks and what the matter is made from, I think tis should be added: the protons and neutrons, which constitute > 99.9% of all the mass around us, are made of up and down quarks. However, these quarks are very light – their (Higgs coupling) mass is few MeVs only, compared to nearly 1GeV mass of a proton or a neutron – order of 1000x more!

    Where does a proton or a neutron mass (and therefore virtually all the mass we perceive) come from? It comes from binding energy of the quarks, the strong force which holds the quarks together.

    In another words, over 99.9% of all the mass we come in contact with is not mass of elementary particles, but a mass of the strong field.

  • Hi…

    Hmm…this is interesting post about Quarks its great Jim & welcome ^_^ anyway if Quarks is combination of particles then we can see it right ??? because Quarks is combination of particles attach by Gluon under high temperature…so if thats true the probability to see QGP inside collision chamber using same technology as powerfull telescope is high…^_^

  • Don M.

    Hi Jim, Thanks for your response to my question. You said that quarks are “elementary”, I assume that means they are not made up from anything else. If thats the case how do they get their flavors (up, down, etc.), or is that just the way they are and there is nothing else?

    Don M.

  • Hello again, Don. Sorry for the slow response. Yes, by “elementary” I mean that quarks are not made up of anything else. Your excellent question amounts to: “If quarks are elementary, how can there be variety?” This is just what I was getting at in my post when I mentioned that the variety of elements told us that atoms are not elementary, and the variety of mesons (pions, kaons) and baryons (protons, neutrons) told us that those particles are not elementary. You’re asking the exact same question that physicists are asking. Unfortunately, this question remains unanswered.

    Our current theory assumes that quarks are elementary, and so your question of why quarks come in a variety of flavors is answered with this unsatisfying non-answer: “It is the nature of quarks to have flavor.” Just so you don’t think we are completely incompetent, I can assure you that this theory’s description of how quarks and other particles behave, given their flavors, has been a screaming success in most ways. There are a few loose ends (including your question) which tell us that our theories are not complete. -Jim

  • Hi, Tyler2. You are absolutely correct: most of the proton mass comes from QCD not the mass of the proton’s valence quarks. While this is very interesting, I think it is an issue separate from whether quarks are elementary particles. Regardless, I think you have given one of these US LHC bloggers a good idea for a future post … Thanks! – Jim

  • Dean

    We keep trying to find out what one subatomic particle is made of but it never satisfies the one true question I’m sure most have. Eventually, we will hit a dead end and find that we have discovered the smallest particle there is (which could be quarks), the question will still remain. How did those quarks come into existence? We keep asking how are things made, but we defer to just trying to find a smaller particle to explain how the “bigger” one came to be. i.e. Lead is made of atoms, atoms are made of baryons and baryons are made of quarks. When we hit the smallest unit, what are we going to do? Where did that small fundamental building block for everything that we know today come from? It is stated that matter can neither be created nor destroyed, only transformed. But how was that matter created in the first place? Can matter be created from nothing?! Something created from nothing would be irrational. And trying to rationalize something that is irrational is being irrational in itself. So, is the question, “How was matter created in the first place?” an irrational question or is there an irrational answer for it that, obviously, cannot be rationalized? Whatever it is, and I’d hate to say this, but, math and logic may be out of its league for this one. Unless there’s something our minds just can’t yet comprehend. Its a humbling concept, and I’m caught in its frustrating allure and mystery :/

  • Hi! i m very much delighted to be here and reading u’r blog!!very impressive indeed!

  • Shayantan Chaudhuri

    Matter can be created from nothing. There has been proof that the vacuum is alive and has short energy bursts. In these bursts matter and antimatter are both created

  • Joshua

    Where did the particles that comprised that vacuum come from?


  • I think that you are absolutely right that the real truth might be soemthing that our minds cannot yet comprehend. that is the only logical answer to all of this. otherwise the true elementary particle is impossible

  • Solomon Deathshead

    So many folks are probably wondering what quarks and electrons are made out of. I think the physicists will eventually discover that they’re made of butter. Just like the moon is made out of ribs.

  • Conner

    Hi Jim, well u know how u said that quarks are made of nothing, is there a possibility that quarks are simply made from inter-dimensional energy?

  • Conner

    And I’m being completely serious.

  • James

    Perhaps quarks could be split or fused to releae more energy then atoms in nuclear fission.

  • Elias Atomos

    Why are there only 6 types (flavors) of quarks? Has any research uncovered the possibility of other quarks existing?

  • Gregory

    Ultimately, if we discover the fundamental particle, we’re still faced with a conundrum: Of what is that particle comprised?

    Some say “energy”, but then we have to ask of what energy is comprised.

    If matter is merely a fancily arranged portion of energy tweaked and tuned so it takes on the shape of an atom with all of its inner parts fully functioning, then what is this “energy” which is capable of wearing a wide variety of costumes and playing many roles?

    I guess my question is more akin to philosophy than physics, because I doubt we will ever discover the true nature and composition of the energy by which all things consist.

  • Science boy

    what about string theory I believe that these quarks are made out of tiny strings of light

  • Conner

    And so my theory about Quarks binging comprised of inter-dementional energy could be viable, I think… Just think about it

  • Søren Schauser

    Hi Jim. Thanks for a great post. One question: Most fermions, leptons and bosons in the Standard Model have different and pretty well-defined qualities. When those particles in the very beginning ‘condensed’ from the unified state – how did they get the same qualities? Why do quarks for instance have only six different masses, not a more or less infinite broad range of masses?

  • Søren Schauser

    Or if I may re-phrase: I understand that the early photons during Pnack-epoch collided and resulted in virtual pair-production. I also understand that this lead to a foam of primordial black holes – which again ended up as a foam of spacetime and lumps of GUT matter. What I don’t get, is how symmetry-breaking continued by making those lumps to leptons and especially a huge amount of quarcks with exactly the same properties? If hard matter as well as bosons were built of some sort ‘smallest possible Planck unit’, I could somehow see why 🙂 But what governs how the relatively few kinds of particles and fields in the Standard Model endned up having so many copies? Thanks, Søren

  • Patrick

    What if energy/matter/all was created by consciousness? that living/conscious vortex perhaps god? Maby we ARE all one every living thing a piece of god itself and all matter the building blocks in which we create all things, and remember we do not contain the imagination to sence what we are missing, or do we?

  • sree kumar

    I was very much delighted to read the various interactions on this subject. It is another chicken or egg question. The basic problem is that we are trying to comprehend something beyond the scope of our
    mind and intelligence. If there is no subject where is the object. Our consciousness makes matter which is evolved in sigle plane of vibrating frequency. There are billions and billions of frquency planes and their permutation combinations. The assemblage of various energy schemes and their permutation combination as in simple digital systems is mind boggling. We see the things as we are. We are not sure about anything. We are conditioned to understand this much only. Well concepts, and concept of that concept until we reach the dead end again. The universe is a manifestation in a sigle plane of energy assemblage suited to our systems. We are not endowed with the tools required to know the royal secret of cration. We shall search within we will be enlightened for we are an infinismal part of That hologram. Lots of love Sree

  • Tyler Winkler

    So I’m just a high school student who has always been very curious about the way the world works. Which has brought me to this blog. But the thing that really I don’t understand is, if there are these very tiny particles that might not have any spatial value at all, then how can we think? If all we are are these tiny dots that are “invisible” then how can are thoughts exists along side these particles? Are our thoughts some kind of different matter that can just “float” in our minds and that can “connect” with these “invisible” dots where then our brain can make sense of it. And saying this, I know it probally won’t make any sense to anyone, but as I said I’m a high school student. This is the basics of what I understand. If anyone knows or understands what I’m talking about fell free to email me at [email protected]. I am very interested in this subject and would love to hear anyone else’s thoughts on this.

  • Tyler Winkler

    Well I do not think that it’s not our minds that can’t comprehend the true answer, I just think that we are asking the wrong questions. I mean think about this, if a licensed teacher wasn’t the one to tell you that everything is made out of atoms, would you really believe anyone else? Based on that concept alone I think that is mind blowing. But then to tell me that atoms are made of BILLIONS of even smaller particles, at that point I wouldn’t even believe my own father if he told me that. That’s just the way I see things anyway.

  • Patrick Taylor

    Soren then is the first time I have ever seen these forums, I honestly love the open thinking…. But I have a sort analogy to propose. Have you ever played those games where you are given several pictures and then asked to identify the ones alike or the ones different, now some people are able to do that easier then others. My point is that maybe, just maybe there are only six different masses because we have extended are knowledge to notice that only 6 different particles are there! Now I already know that I am more then likely going to be disproven, but I am a sophomore in Highschool and just decided, hey why not input my little idea!

  • Kevin Marston

    I had a very interesting idea not too long ago.
    It’s very similar to the basis of computer data, which essentially can be boiled down to 1’s and 0s. These data, when arranged in different patterns, yield different results.
    Knowing this, I also realized that as far as I knew, the organization for how atoms worked was very random; a small change in the number of electrons, protons, or neutrons could be the difference between a harmless substance and a deadly poison.
    These gave me the idea that possibly, somewhere possibly far smaller than even quarks, all matter would eventually come to some impossibly singular unit that somehow led to the impressively variant reactions between atoms and other subatomic particles, and that this unit (there would be only one kind) would create these differences in the same basic way as computer data; 1s and 0s. However, with this, the 1s would be the presence of this unit and the 0s would be the absence of it. With this simple concept, and the incredibly massive amount of patterns that it could create (expanding in 3d, as our world is 3d) would lead to all the properties and reactions of matter in the universe.
    Please feel free to email me at [email protected] if you don’t understand what I’m saying (I can be a bit wordy at times, I’ll admit.)
    And please excuse my very basic understanding of quarks and such. After all, I’m only in 8th Grade. 🙂

  • If quarks are point particles with zero radius, then even infinite quarks in a proton would not suffice for making it complete. Being point particles , they have to have a very very very small radius which cannot be calculated using the machines available today. Thus, would you kindly tell me the reason for which yo have used the term “ZERO RADIUS” because you are most knowledgeable than me in this fiels as I am merely a high school student.
    If there is any thing that you would like me to understand please do send a mail on [email protected] and I shall be most grateful to you

  • It is just like rooms in a house. A house may have 6 rooms so the area per head is more. However if there are 6 people in the house, so the per head are is 1/6 or the total area.
    Similarly quarks may not provide enough energy that an atom produces.
    I may be wrong but that is what i think should be the fact. Please correct me if I am wrong

  • The quarks constitute an invisible triangle. The gluon being the line of force connecting the quarks, acts as photon in the streaks of light. Therefore, the up triangle and the down triangle of the proton and the neutron are linked together. therein lives the stronger force. in gold 79 protons are connected to 79 neutrons. therefor, if gluon by itself is to bear the stronger force, then whether the mere spilit in the proton itself ctreate explosion?

  • Dear Sir ,
    I am an old man(71)charmed by Phisics and nonreligious . Please let me show my supposition :
    If not quarks , maybe another , smaller particle , could be made of pure energy , so to finish looking for the smalest particles ! Einstein admitted that : E = mc2 . That also allow to concentrate the Universe in a mathematical point(Big Bang)since the energy has no dimensions !
    Also the temperature(which is the intensity of mouvement of particles)will lose the sense in absence of matter . So , the Big Bang could be a cosmical transformation of energy into matter . Of course , rises the question : “which is the source of the energy ?” I have a single answer : “something inconceivable that nonscientist people resign to call the God”
    Maybe the study of energy fields will reveal the secret of matter ?

  • Ivy

    I’m 11 years old and I’m really interested in science. When I grow up, I want to discover new things. I just wanted to say you did such an excellent job. This kind of thing is usually hard for 11 year olds to understand, but I got it perfectly. Thanks!

  • In my Book titled; The Last Chapter of the Symphony of Existence (The Super Unified Field Theory), you will find the dimensions of all types of Quarks. Also, this book will radically change the track of the research work of Theoretical Physics, Particle Physics and Cosmology in this century, and considered, in the same time, a Paradigm Shift in the human thought. This book will help you in understanding the universe, the matter, the antimatter, the religion, the destiny of mankind and the objectives of our creation, as Einstein said; “Science without religion is lame, and religion without science is blind.”

  • Please note that, this is not publicity for the book, and I’m willing to submit a short presentation for the entire book (19.5 MB). Of course, if you are looking, faithfully, for “the scientific truth” as well as the “absolute truth”. With regards.

  • Nathan White

    I just read this and believe your on the way to discoverini g the meaning of life itself.

  • Nathan White

    I would love to read your work so I can further my knowledge in quarks. I believe we’re waisting time looking into space when the answtoer to life is clearly within these quarks. We need to keep going smaller to see the bigger picture.

  • Bruno

    Nice post just please don’t say quarks have 0 radius that sounds silly… if it had 0 radius it would simply not exist. It has a very small radius yes but not 0. 🙂

    As for dimensions and the question about the possibility of existing an even smaller particle I have no idea why scientists tend to assume any particle they discover can’t be made of even smaller particles… size is really irrelevant, just because it looks small to us it doesn’t mean it is the smallest, it is just small in OUR perspective. In the perspective of a quark, an atom is huge…

    I’m pretty sure there are particles billions of times smaller than quarks which are made of even smaller ones, there’s no reason to assume there is a limitation just because we want it to be, as far as we know it could just extend forever like Pi does as we must assume this is the rule unless there is reason in contrary rather than believe we reached the limit unless proof in contrary… 🙂

    Manipulating quarks allows us to transform matter into any type of matter or energy, as we go deeper we’ll be able to manipulate dimensions previously unknown to us as the exotic materials we can create will have unusual physical properties. Of course this is probably centuries away but we’ll get there.

    In another point, we also don’t know how big the universe is or what lies beyond and maybe an universe is just the size of a quark in another perspective… we just don’t know. In our ignorance of what reality truly is, I’d prefer to avoid terms like “limitation”, “impossible”, etc. We’re too ignorant to use those terms. 🙂

  • Bob S

    Great blog, very thought provoking! I’m really interested in the effects extreme gravity would have on quarks.

    My question references black holes in relation to the effects of their gravity ripping apart matter to the quark level. For arguments sake, lets set frame dragging aside and assume since black holes gain mass that it’s not a hole but a sphere. So at some point, gravity is ripping matter apart, is it plausible that gravity could break down a proton into its quarks and pull quarks down and compress them into a shpehrical structure? Quarks whether engery or particle couldn’t escape and you can’t lose the information, would it neatly compact the quarks into whatever element extreme pressure and temp would create?

    I am assuming that if you can smash two protons togeter in the LHC, then gravity can compress two protons togeter into its quarks.

  • VM

    Why is Higgs Boson not showing in the elementary particles diagram above ?

  • Peter M

    Most of the subatomic charts date back before the higgs boson was discovered at LHC.

  • Gary Merritt

    I think the real question is why there is something instead of nothing. This has always been answered by the god answer. Then the question is where did god come from. But a god is not needed it is only an extra step, an excuse why there is no answer. We just have to admit there is no answer, all we can say is there is something and work from there. As far as we can go at present is to say we have quarks and they appear to be point sources of energy with no radius. At this point the particle theory breaks down. How can we have a particle if it has no radius. I believe a quark is a vortex in the space aether and energy should be defined as any movement in this space either. It is the space aether which is the basic substance. We will never know where it came from we can only say for sure it exist. The six different flavors of quarks can be defined as different vortex structures and how we perceive then. It may be the way they connect together that makes them look different. It may be a single quark can not exist, it needs to be connected to other quarks to maintain it’s vortex. The vortex of space aether appears to be a particle but needs no radius as the radius is space aether and gradually becomes and is connected to the aether.In other words it’s radius is all of space.


  • adrian

    what made the first thing or chemical in the world?

  • Alan

    If, as some cosmologists believe, the Universe is infinite at a macro level, could it also be infinite at the other end of the scale with quarks being made of another, smaller sub-atomic particle, and those particles being made of even smaller particles, and so on, ad infinitum?

  • Elisabeth Caskey

    Have there been scientific papers published that describe the current ideas about the size of quarks? I am writing a paper and I need to properly footnote that the size of quarks has not been determined, but are thought to be infinitesimally small, with a wave function describing their location with respect to the particle that they constitute.
    Thank you.

  • Shu

    Hi guys, of all the physics forums I’ve visited, this is the best. There’s freedom of opinion, clarity of subject and most of all no-one tries to prove something with just delirious mathematics and equations.
    Being nonreligious, I’m still disturbed about the answer to the final question everyone here,including me, is pondering over : WHERE DID IT ALL COME FROM ? If we keep asking questions along these lines, all the while making discoveries beyond atoms, beyond quarks, beyond strings…., where will it all end up ? A dead end like someone said ? This will mean that either the human brain can go no further OR that it all began with magic, otherwise known as GOD ! Just think about it. Personally, I cannot conceive of a way out.
    As if that weren’t enough to warp one’s brain, I got another slightly-off- topic- question about the universe that I continually keep asking myself “WHAT IS IT ALL ABOUT ?! “

  • Rohit Patil

    Science has discovered that matter is made up of atoms, atoms are made up of fundamental particles proton, electron, neutron. also that these fundamental particles are made up of quarks. So my question is what are quarks made up of? quark also is a bulky because it has mass. Something must be there inside the quarks and then inside and deep inside . I think that this chain will never end.

  • Aaron

    The more I read the more I see the elegance in that the smallest appears to be a repeat of the biggest at a different scale. The coolest question will always be why… but my God I would love to know what quarks are made of!!! lol

  • Anonymous

    Isn’t that what string theory is(sort of)?

  • Anonymous

    The “point-like particles” have to have some mass and take up some space. I honestly don’t think it’s feasible to have something that takes up no space.

  • Anonymous

    I honestly don’t think there is a such thing as dimensions. But, I could be wrong!

  • Jimmy12345

    We can observe fractals in nature and also describe them mathematically. Since we use numbers to describe all the rules and laws of nature, I think it is definitely worth considering that the universe might be a fractal itself.

  • Tyler Allen

    this is an old thread but I found my way here today. I think of these things on a day to day basis and find myself wondering, am I normal? why does no one I know talk about these things that seem so important to me? I really don’t think it’s a matter of opinion whether or not these things are important, I think they are truly important. so why are so many people caught up in today’s world and totally oblivious to all of this? ignorance truly is bliss and I really wish sometimes that I had that blissful ignorance so that I may sleep better at night not pondering the deepest questions of the universe. its a gift and a curse I guess but it’s good to read these posts and know that there are others out there like me.

  • BigRalphSmith

    No dimensions? We’ve got four of them we can directly observe. There’s also mathematical models that describes yet more dimensions. One of those models describes 11 dimensions. Still other models describe even more.

  • Kurtis Long

    Does anyone know which experiment it was, that while shooting quarks at a screen they stayed in a straight line beam to the screen, but when the scientists left the cameras caught them basically going everywhere?

  • Kurtis Long

    My Advice: Don’t Keep looking deeper and deeper, trying to find smaller and smaller and smaller. We should stop at Quarks for awhile and discover their “usefulness” first. What is the point in finding another smaller thing that has mass if these hold no value, neither would the next smaller one… and next smaller and next smaller…etc…They will always have mass or they wouldn’t be in the physical plane/realm

  • There are no quarks like they say there are.
    A quark would have to be connected to other quarks in only specific arrangements.
    There would have to be multiple connection mechanisms that only allow those certain arrangements.

    A red can only connect to one blue and one green.
    If a red is connected to a blue, another blue (or red) is not allowed.
    A blue can only connect to a green and a red etc.

    To form correctly they would need a fairly large set of rules, but that cannot be because it is basic stuff working at a fundamental (simple) level.
    And everything would of course have to work and form automatically.

    As a group quarks are called a Neutron or a Proton and they also have to be connected to each other (but the connection would actually be coming from a quark) proton is only the name for a group. That’s another specific type connection mechanism

    And they would have to be connected to the electrons supposedly in orbit. That’s another specific type connection mechanism.
    Stuff is not happening like that. It would require at least 5 different type connection mechanisms.
    I bet you cannot even think of two. You cannot say “force” because any force has to be made out of particles and that does not solve the problem. The force particles would still need connection mechanisms.
    Do you have even one way particles can connect at a quantum level? Ummm… no, you don’t.

    And if you add “gluons” into the stupidity, you get the same type of mess.
    But it does show how if there is a mechanism the gluons are not needed because the mechanism must be built into the particles.

    NOTE: It doesn’t matter how they explain “color charge”. The point is they think there are 3 different things inside a proton (or neutron) and they are held together in a specific arrangement. If you can think about it in depth you will realize that is completely impossible.
    The explanation (they give) is the only way to explain an incorrect model. But the model and the explanation are both impossible.
    And if you have an incorrect model and an incorrect explanation you can call it counterintuitive — that’s a way to allow anything, even magic. ..

    How do 3 quarks know that is the correct number for a proton / neutron?
    Why do not 4 quarks combine?
    Is there an instruction set / manual at that level specifically for particles?
    No! …everything has to be automatic.
    Think about it, how do quarks know to only combine in groups of three?
    The answer is… they don’t, the mainstream quark model is incorrect

  • New_Sun

    What is the point of stopping the search and waiting to find usefulness of the current tier of fundamental particles? Science and discovery is a collaboration, you can and will have many teams with different focuses.

    Who knows whether Quarks will remain “useless”, but maybe the undiscovered particles that make them up have a property that is significantly “valuable.” If so, then progress will have been halted and time wasted.

    All goals of discovery should be treated as valuable and worth obtaining.

  • dragonf1re96

    I’ve always considered atoms to be like solar systems, after all physics are the everywhere.

  • dragonf1re96

    Democritus probably thought in the same way.

  • dragonf1re96

    There is no point in one knowing if one is the only one

  • dragonf1re96

    Energy does distort perhaps we perceive that as solidity.

  • dragonf1re96

    You are not wrong, a dimension is not something real it is made up to categorize a phenomenon that we do not understand.

  • dragonf1re96

    If you believe in the big bang the I’d suppose the only way to answer your questions would be to observe it, but if we could do that we’d probably already know.

  • dragonf1re96

    Based on Newton’s laws everything is on a set path

  • dragonf1re96

    … In theory, but more likely we can not yet perceive what causes form.

  • dragonf1re96

    God is only necessary if there is a beginning sort-of like an activation energy.

  • dragonf1re96

    Energy and mass are one in the same bit it is more complex than that, Einstien was quite vague.

  • Nope, go to that link and read it.

  • dragonf1re96

    Ps. Energy is singular if you understand how equations work, in other words: it is on its own side of the equation (by it’s self).

  • dragonf1re96

    Pss. An equation is not one whole, but two wholes that “equal” eachother.

    Sorry for being rude, but I feel that it is warranted.

  • Sorry, you have absolutely no idea of what energy is, but neither does anyone else for that matter.


    You do not understand equations either

  • Sorry, you have absolutely no idea of what energy is, but neither does anyone else for that matter.


    You do not understand equations either…

  • dragonf1re96

    On the rel right now bruh: energy and mass are the same thing—–E=mc^2

  • You are an imbecile. The mass in multiplied by the speed of light squared c^2

    Here it is really easy for you…
    E = mc^2 … correct

    E =/= m ….. E is not equal to m

  • dragonf1re96

    Energy not beyond the speed of light has a measured mass bruh YOu ARe A JIVE TURKEY over some semantic, who makes science UNfun

  • Kurtis Long

    I agree with you on the principle of what you are saying only because of the time aspect, but I ask you this if you don’t know what the big machine is for, yet you think pressing the small buttons to find out their usefulness (what they are used for) is important; try imagining doing that in the cab of a combine, a 747, or the desk at the Hoover dam, maybe perhaps a nuclear reactor? Send me in blindfolded to your latest project and let me start rummaging around to find out the usefulness of things because it might save me time using them in the future. Now, if you first know it’s a combine, or a 747, or a dam & have studied how it works, then maybe you press buttons. This I do know the first atom bombs used had larger particles than the later more explosive Hydrogen ones.
    Maybe poking needle sized black holes in the fabric of reality (space/time) isn’t such a big deal. Then again poke a wine sack from days passed filled with water, repeatedly with a needle, sure on the outside of the fabric we know it’s not going to end pretty, but if we were a microbe swimming around on the inside, it might be too late by the time we realize there is a major problem.
    Of course I understand why theoretical physics keeps imagining the possible existence of another, and another particle not truly observed but inferred by things that are seen….: At this point I have three clear choices 1. I can point out a pathetic attempt to keep talking about more and more imaginary things just to stay working and getting paid. 2. Understand that science has reached a point in understanding that is no better or worse than other religions; having the possible existence of something unseen be real because of what is seen (Faith?) or 3. Sit back and make up more and more possible stuff, until it becomes impossible and you have to change to a new science, or a new way of doing science, just like has been done over and over again. In deep honesty though, I am hoping that we get some major unified theory of everything we can use at a whim, to make the world a better place…even doing what you said…I just don’t want us to slip and destroy ourselves in the process. I at one point suggested maybe we should wait until we are in intergalactic space and figure out how to seal, (fix), or what ever a blackhole (gravitronic tachyon missles?), BEFORE we start blasting away creating pin sized Black holes in our own atmosphere, reality, or what ever with Super Colliders trying to find ever smaller and smaller particles. Is that so ludicrous as to know how to fix something before you tear it apart…no matter how small those parts may be?

  • Rj Kietchen

    Yes, completely ludicrous. With billions of units of unused human potentiality there is a fantastic amount of untapped capacity for theoretical, imaginative, investigatory research in new areas, utilitarian development for known areas, practical building, and an untold number of scientific observations. The focus should be on drastically EXPANDING all areas of investigation, not putting your head in a bag because one area is not well understood.

  • Mick

    I’ve been thinking that for a while. Not having measurable mass because they are transient, connecting one dimension to the other. If someone can explain it in a better way, feel free.

  • Daniel Nehrbass

    But the chain must end. You cannot build a tower by infinitely placing a block at the bottom. Somehow, at some point, there is always a bottom block, a base. But since, so far, science has only ever told us that matter is made of particles smaller than it’s self (this includes energy by the way) I would conclude that the base of the tower is not a material, or physical, particle. So I suppose you could say that the universe is not “made” of matter at all, but simple consists of it. Have I destroyed your life yet? But wait, there’s more. now I’m getting totally hypothetical and pseudoscience here, but if the basic building block of all matter isn’t matter, what is it? Wacky part coming up! The only thing in the universe that I can thing of that is not material is, wait for it, Thought! Yes pure thought. Now from a scientific standpoint that seems utterly ridiculous, but it’s all I can come up with. If you can come up with an alternative, please tell.

  • Correct, but they already went too far with “Quarks.”

    There are definitely things you could call protons and neutrons but they are made from a conglomerate of balled up string particles (not the string theory type)

  • Daniel Nehrbass

    You’re hitting very close to ideas developed by this philosopher and theologian named Thomas Aquinas. I would strongly recommend reading some of his works, they’re pretty cool. He states that God is, and I will probably not explain this well at all, purest simple thought. Essentially God is “I Am”. And through that perfectly simple thought came everything. Now I’m not saying this is true or not, but if we truly are looking for the simplest “particle”, then I think this is an interesting idea. I mean really, the basic “particle” can’t really be matter, can it? If it was, then it would be made of something smaller. So, as weird as it sounds, it kind of makes sense that it would be thought as that is the only thing we know to exist besides matter.

  • Daniel Nehrbass

    The Universe and all things are guided by two simple rules, cause and effect. A cause leads to an effect which is in turn the cause of the next effect and so on. But, logically, if this is true, then there must be a first cause to start the chain. This “first cause” must exist outside of that which it is effecting (the Universe) and could not have a cause itself. This means that there is something (or someone) outside of space-time with no cause that forced all of this into motion. Religious people would call this entity “God”. It’s simple logic really.

  • Daniel Nehrbass

    Same bro. I guess we’re just special that way. But I’d count it as a gift.

  • Daniel Nehrbass

    Wait, so are you saying that these string balls are the base?

  • Yes, but they are only balled up as protons, neutrons or neutrinos
    They are a host of other things while full length — not balled up (of course).

  • Daniel Nehrbass

    To be honest I have never heard of these “String Balls” if you could give me more info, it would be nice. But, even if i know almost nothing about them, I still ask the question, what are they made of? I may not know what they are, but I know they are 3 dimensional and that they are still matter and that they still must be composed of something smaller, otherwise they would not exist. Before further evidence arises we must conclude that the base of the tower, so to speak, must be non-physical since it cannot be made of particles smaller than itself, which, as far as we know, is an innate property of matter and all physical things.

  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    There is a high tension string particle field in space (not the string theory type). Everything is connected by the particle field and it moves along with largest mass in proximity (something like what gravitational fields would be doing).
    A good 2-D model would be something like a spiders web (individual string lengths are approximately one Ångström).
    Now imagine an infinite 3-D spiders web. If a vibration was set off in it, it would travel forever and the speed the vibrations travel (through the net) is the speed of light (that’s actually what light is, a vibration traveling through a string particle field)
    The speed vibrations travel through the particle field is the speed of light “c”

    The particle field strings have a certain amount of tension, length and mass. That makes ‘c’ the speed it is. If the tension, length or mass changed so would ‘c’

    Here is a regular string tension formula…

    Tension = velocity squared x mass / Length.

    If we plug c in and rearrange we get…
    TL = mc^2

    Both sides of the equation are in joules or energy… equivalent to “E”.
    It means the Tension of the strings in space times their length is equal to their energy.

    This is why the speed of light is involved in Einsteins mass energy equivalence equation…

    E = mc^2

    …and actually why light travels at the speed of light…
    I always wondered why… now I know.
    It had to be something mechanical… tension and string lengths!

    So, you can arrive at Einsteins famous formula from completely different directions.
    You can think energy is contained in mass and released.

    E = mc^2

    Or you can think there is a particle field of strings and mass is inert, the energy is only potential… released (actually pulled) by tension on the strings.

    TL = mc^2

    They are equivalent. Which is correct? You do not know.

    Tesla was correct…
    “There is no energy in matter other than that received from the environment.” – Nikola Tesla

  • Think of a spiders web. It can commandeer a huge area (that would be a particle field) but it could also ball-up into almost nothing (that’s a proton etc.)


  • ThatGirl

    The “observable dimensions” you are talking about are just a theory. How do we know that length can exist without width? How do we know that length and width can exist without height? We assume that they can but we have no proof. That is why it is just a theory. The only true “observable dimension” is this one.

  • ThatGirl

    Then where did the tiny strings of light come from. See? It’s never ending.

  • I think they already went too far with “Quarks.”

    There are definitely things you could call protons and neutrons but they are made from a conglomerate of balled up string particles (not the string theory type).

    That is what everything is made from.

    The string are considered 1D but of course they an infinitesimal width and height so they are actually 3D

    Check here…

  • dianabyron

    Lovely blog, Jim, thanks!

  • dianabyron

    I’m a non-physicist (with a bit of way-back-when physics) putting together a science course for a charity college. Your blog has made a complex subject simple and for that I’m grateful. I was looking for ‘what are quarks made of?’ to see how deep it goes! What would be involved in getting permission to use the Baryon Octet diagram to show the students how pretty and symmetrical things are?

  • Kaelym George

    Would it be possible to create more elements using different combinations or quarks inside of protons and what not?

  • Think about it… quarks supposedly ‘strong force’ color charge themselves together in groups of three to form a proton or neutron.

    But the proton package of three quarks is also being held together by supposed ‘strong force’ to other protons… but everything is supposedly just quarks so it is like a big bag of marbles.

    It’s easy for me to see it won’t work, no one else can see it at the moment

  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I don’t think anything is complex and there is not a way for things to be complex and also work automatically (which everything must be doing).

    You can use anything as an example: for instance — electrons. They are supposedly being held in place in their orbits by protons (actually quarks) shooting (say ‘exchanging’ (if you like)) photons at them.
    How could they possibly know what direction to shoot the photons?

    Check out Gold — 79 electrons…
    The electrons are supposedly orbiting so the actual quark that is doing the shooting for whatever electron must be constantly changing as the electron goes round the nucleus.

    And the quarks that are supposedly holding electrons in place by shooting photons at them are the same quarks are also shooting gluons at other quarks. https://en.wikipedia.Org/wiki/Color_charge

    Get a good picture of everything that (they say) must be happening inside of an atom and you will realize it absolutely cannot be happening like that, what you are led to believe is actually bonkers.
    The basic fundamental stuff cannot do advanced mechanical interactions, everything has to be automatic.

    Gravity is also very simple — impossible to be complex.

    Complex quantum fundamental mechanics are impossible.

  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I don’t think anything is complex and there is not a way for things to be complex and also work automatically (which everything must be doing).

    You can use anything as an example: for instance — electrons. They are supposedly being held in place in their orbits by protons (actually quarks) shooting (say ‘exchanging’ (if you like)) photons at them.
    How could they possibly know what direction to shoot the photons?

    Check out Gold — 79 electrons…
    The electrons are supposedly orbiting so the actual quark that is doing the shooting for whatever electron must be constantly changing as the electron goes round the nucleus.

    And the quarks that are supposedly holding electrons in place by shooting photons at them are the same quarks are also shooting gluons at other quarks. https://en.wikipedia.Org/wiki/Color_charge

    Get a good picture of everything that (they say) must be happening inside of an atom and you will realize it absolutely cannot be happening like that, what you are led to believe is actually bonkers.
    The basic fundamental stuff cannot do advanced mechanical interactions, everything has to be automatic.

    Gravity is also very simple — impossible to be complex.

    Complex quantum fundamental mechanics are impossible.

  • BigRalphSmith

    Those things you mention are some of the few things that we actually DO have proof of.
    “Proof” only exists in mathematics and we know the things we know about the “observable” dimensions (and all the other dimensions) because of math.
    It’s obvious that you have no concept of what a dimension is.

  • Think about it… quarks supposedly ‘strong force’ color charge themselves together in groups of three to form a proton or neutron.

    But the proton package of three quarks is also being held together by supposed ‘strong force’ to other protons (supposedly quarks are shooting gluons at other quarks)… but everything is supposedly just quarks so it is like a big bag of marbles.

    It’s easy for me to see it won’t work, no one else can see it at the moment

  • ThatGirl is absolutely correct.

  • Ryan Webster

    A differnet combination of quarks creates a particle different from a proton. Aside from the three well known sub atomic particles many of the others are highly highly highly unstable. Thus you cannot alter a Proton and it remain a proton. You are in essence suggesting that adding a proton to Hydrogen could create anything other than Helium.

  • Ryan Webster

    Einstein was a man. He proposed a theoretical equation which suits our current knowledge quite well. When our knowledge expands past what it is now (and we learn what Energy truly is) it will be as laughable as phlogiston.

  • Kaelym George

    I see what you are implementing but surely if there are three stable combinations there is a possibilitie that there could be more (in theroy of course) but the thing is if you are to create a new sub atomic particle what would you do with it . would you be able to add it to the makeup of atoms or create something entirely different but on the same.scale of an.atom . but if you changed the structure would it still be classed as an atom or something entirely new? All this is theory but at the moment any thing is possible it just how we get there….

  • BigRalphSmith

    So, let’s boil this down to the basics so I can be sure I understand what you are getting at.
    You are basically saying that, if we don’t know everything, then that means we don’t know anything?
    If we can’t already answer every question you have with a scientific answer (that you can also already intuitively understand), then everything we’ve learned about our universe is just bullshit?
    Is that what you’re saying?

  • NO! She was NOT saying that.

  • BigRalphSmith

    How about we let her clarify her own comment?

  • BigRalphSmith

    Thank you for your opinion.
    Once again, how about we let her clarify her own comment?
    I’m actually interested to hear what her thought process is on this matter and what conclusion she feels one is supposed to draw from her statement.

  • ThatGirl explained everything quite well. No clarification needed.

  • BigRalphSmith

    Says who?

  • John Deas

    I’ve read that the math doesn’t work much using particles significantly smaller than a quark. Something about the amount of energy required to keep mass that small is much higher than practical, if you moved back up the chain.

  • Zac Ary Olang

    If man could just accept that their perception is limited, we could have moved on and be bothered with things that matter. Human arrogance and denial of a greater being who has deliberately reduced their capacity to unveil reality will push us further into the unknowing and confusion.

  • Bruce Stewart

    After an infinite amount of time there would be nothing left but we are still here.

  • Bruce Stewart

    If a quark has no dimension how can there be a smaller particle?

  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


    …that’s a mind bender.

    Oxygen has 8 protons, 8 neutrons and 8 electrons making a total of 24 particles per atom.
    Aluminum — number 13 — would have a total of 39 particles.
    Gold — number 79 — would have 237 particles.
    The properties of elements are known with great precision but they are in actuality just a different number of the same thing (that is true regardless of the theory).
    Somethings might be soft, hard, liquid, gas, solid, different colors, magnetic, rubbery, stiff, etc. but they are all just a different number of the same particle. You don’t know the properties of it… you only know the properties of a large group of it.
    In other words… even though you might know a string has a string-like shape, you can’t know what the string is made from because it is what is used to make things.

    A different number (amount) of the exact same thing makes completely different things (elements.)

    If you do a chemical test and you find out something is Aluminum… you have only found out there are 39 string particles in a group… not what the actual strings are.
    So, it (a string) is not an element and cannot be like any element or molecule unless it is by pure coincidence.
    The string (purely by happenstance) might be just like a bendable but non-stretchable fishing line or spiders web. But they also might be something that is completely inconceivable and unknowable to humans.

    Also… when you look at Gold you can see it has a nice color, correct? No, gold is a group of atoms made from 237 particles each. And those particles are made from strings.
    Color is only the frequency of vibrations that are traveling to your eye along the strings. No matter what you are looking at you are only seeing a different vibrational frequency from a different number of strings in a group.

    Could a string actually have a color anyway? Or even be white, black or grey? I have absolutely no idea. I’m sure it cannot be invisible though, because…
    for something to be invisible it would mean that light passes through it. And light is only a vibration coming from that same type of string. There isn’t anyway to see it but it is not invisible.

    Zeno? If you take any object like an iron bar — you can crack it in half because it is made from individual atoms. At a quantum level the iron bar is NOT made from one continuous substance. But the strings in my theory (or regular string theory) actually possibly are continuous. So if you took a (quantum) string and magnified it until it was the same width as a pencil, could you snap it in half? It would be like having a big fat piece of fishing line. But, Instead of the fishing line being made from billions and billions of individual molecules of plastic… it would be just one continuous thing.

    A string is: Bendable not stretchable. Not invisible but you cannot see it. There is no way to tell if it has color. And I know about ten other things about it. See if you can guess any.

  • Yes, and they say there are three quarks in a group and the individual quarks are shooting gluons (strong force) at each other to hold themselves together in a proton package.

    And one of those quarks must also be shooting gluons at other proton packages (remember: “proton” is actually just the name for a group of 3 quarks).

    So the quarks are shooting gluons to hold the proton together and also to hold protons to other protons.

    And since a lot of atoms have more than just 2 protons it means at least one quark package is shooting gluons at more than one other proton package. (it would either be one quark shooting at 2 different proton packages or 2 different quarks shooting at the other packages.)

    There are three different color charges and when a gluon gets shot at another quarks it changes the color charge of that quark: RED, BLUE or GREEN.

    If that’s not enough… the quarks are also shooting photons at electrons to hold the electrons in their orbits.

    It must be wild when there is an atom with about 80 or so protons — it would mean there are also 80 neutrons. So that would be a package of 160 N/P or three times that amount in quarks — that equals 480 quarks.
    And all of the inner quarks would be completely buried, but I guess that does not matter.

  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


    They say there are three quarks in a group and the individual quarks are shooting gluons (strong force) at each other to hold themselves together in a proton package.

    And one of those quarks must also be shooting gluons at other proton packages (remember: “proton” is actually just the name for a group of 3 quarks).

    So the quarks are shooting gluons to hold the proton together and also to hold protons to other protons.

    And since a lot of atoms have more than just 2 protons it means at least one quark package is shooting gluons at more than one other proton package. (it would either be one quark shooting at 2 different proton packages or 2 different quarks shooting at the other packages.)

    There are three different color charges and when a gluon gets shot at another quark it changes the color charge of that quark: RED, BLUE or GREEN.

    If that’s not enough… the quarks are also shooting photons at electrons to hold the electrons in their orbits.
    As the electron goes round the nucleus: is the quark that is doing the shooting at that particular electron changing? Or do the photons get shot right through the center of the nucleus if the electron is on the other side at the moment? Who cares… just ignore stuff like that.

    It must be wild when there is an atom with about 80 or so protons — it would mean there are also 80 neutrons. So that would be a package of 160 N/P or three times that amount in quarks — that equals 480 quarks.
    And all of the inner quarks would be completely buried, but I guess that does not matter. Because sanity does not even matter.

  • Cnu Iitian

    To the extent i understand that we should invest money,time & energy into investigating what these quarks are made of & how do they make up charge and other useful properties. Going this way may take lots of time but once the science behind is known then we could harness the energy by pin-pointing the way it has to be in very effective way. I believe that the end of this search will not be matter but energy which makes up this all which wont have mass or charge but trapped somehow which needs to be unleashed.

  • OneMan

    Holy Moses! I just had this identical thought the other day. Tried the reason my way back into nothingness and just kept thinking, “i am I am…” because I had no other language to define it. It had to be “the first thing”.

  • Daniel Nehrbass

    Here’s another weird thought: Why? Science and scientists can and will answer the how and the what probably for the rest of the eternity that scientists are in existence. How do we exist? What do we exist as? But they often ignore a fundamental and very troubling question, Why? Why do we exist? Whenever I begin to think about the beginnings of time and matter and the origins of the universe and possibly God himself, I always hit a dead end. The final question, so to speak. That is, Why do we exist? Basically I’ve arrived at the very same spot that so many great thinkers before me have arrived at, what is the meaning of life? Why do we even exist? Wouldn’t it have been much easier and quite frankly more logical to simple never exist? Just nothing? Ever? So, no matter what we discover, the question will always remain… Why are we even here?

    Truth is, I don’t have an answer. Except, I do have an idea.

    If nothing existed, than that would form a paradox because if nothing existed than what existed would be nothing! If nothing existed then nothing would literally exist! Nothing, by existing, destroys itself by existing! Boom, mind blown. So maybe, fundamentally, that is God. Perhaps God is the paradox of nothing creating everything that it is not by existing… which is everything. WOW!!!

  • OneMan

    I have tried to explore that same line of thought as well. It’s kind of where descartes goes with all of his doubting. The troubling conclusion for me was, keeping down that you end up with yourself as the answer.

    At the very, least you can’t prove anything else exists. If the present moment is really all that exists, and you are the only thing that you can know with certainty is perceiving it, then you’re probably creating it. How do you know something else isn’t creating it for you? You don’t, you just know that thought of there possibly being something else is yours. If God exists, then he would have a hard time convincing me that it wasn’t me who created him. Even if he performed miracles to “prove it” there would be no way around the, “how do you I didn’t want you to do that” argument, and round and round we would go. Ending me would be the only way to prove it to himself, but would prove nothing to me.

    Like with your example, “perhaps God is the paradox of nothing creating everything that it is not by existing”. That concept only lives in the mind, your mind in this instance. So in having that very thought, you created that paradox as God, therefore that paradox is probably you. How do you know that you didn’t just have the revelation of, “oh shit, I am God” . Knowing that you are the only thing would mean that you might as well be nothing, because there is nothing else to witness you. It might be fun for the first few eons, but eventually you would either just will yourself out of existing (if you could) or, more logically, put yourself back into “Daniel’s” body and wipe your memory of yourself being God and put the infinite dangling carrot of truth (knowing you’re God) just out of your own reach.

    This is kind of where “I AM” comes in. I was doing a meditation; going back to that core thought of maybe I’m the only thing, and I then I started thinking about how I would have “begun” if I was. Just couldn’t get away from that being the starting thought, because that’s how I would have done it. Thomas Aquinas was on to something with that one. I’ll have to read him at some point to see how he reached that conclusion, because I suspect that he was really thinking about himself as God, but since that was (and still in a way) blasphemous at that time, he chalked it up to God.

    At some point though, you have to get away from this solipsistic thought process because it’s not super helpful or informative as to how to live your life. It serves it’s purpose from time to time, but if you stay in that mode, you are eventually considered a narcissist sociopath by society, which, could be a construct you put up in order to keep yourself from becoming one.

    So I try to stick with the idea that if there is one thing then there has to be at least two things in that same instance, at the very least, for them to witness their own existence. But that thought takes a small leap of faith, because you can never prove that that other thing isn’t really you tricking yourself into believing that you’re not God.

    So why? Because you have to. You’ve always done it. Infinitely. You either can’t do it any other way, or every other way sucks because you’ve tried them all. You like being Daniel, with his struggles and triumphs. . Deep down, you know the alternative…loneliness and then maybe non existence.

    I have faith that other perceptions exist, but occasionally skate that line of doubt. There’s a balance in there somewhere. Or at least, I think there is.

    Obviously, I don’t, or can’t believe any of this with certainty or that would ruin the whole game on my end, and I would never post something like this or interact with other things at all.

    Either way, this life is seemingly short (perhaps another construct), so we should all continue to make the best choices we can and improve this slice of reality to the best of our ability, even if, maybe especially if, all of the things that inform you are your own constructs. Either you made them, or everything else did, but no matter what, there are pretty clear indicators to any given consciousness (or at least to mine) as to what is right, wrong, good, bad and all of those other things that make us function.

    Didn’t mean to sound preachy, but writing this stuff out is as much — perhaps more— for me as it is for any other perception that chooses to read it.

    Likewise, these are not answers. Just ideas that happen to make a whole lot of sense to me at present time. I’m always open to then next idea that makes more sense. In fact, I probably changed my mind 10 times while writing this!

  • Cody Tucker

    But nothing is not a presence; it’s the absence of presence. Your paradox is rooted in language, not the actual concept.

  • Drew Melman-Rogers

    The number of neutrons does not vary directly with the number of protons

  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    When the strings of a particle are balled up or collapsed… they are a proton or neutron.

    The individual radii (1 of 20 strings) are the connectors used to connect neutrons to protons (balled up) and protons to electrons (full length but twisted together).

    Everything is made out of the same particle and every particle has 20 strings unless it is smashed up deformed matter.
    A proton has one string balled (tightly wound together) with a neutron, 18 balled by themselves and one full length twist connected to an electron.

    A free proton would look like this   ~~~●~~~     (that’s one free string, 18 balled, one free string)

    A free neutron would look like this   ●~~~     (19 balled, and one free string)

    A free electron would look like this   ---∗---     (one free string, 18 free strings in a disc shape, one free string)

    A proton can grab a neutron and an electron.

    ●~~~ ~~~●~~~ ---∗---     (NPE on the loose)

               ●●~~~∗---     (NPE combined)

    (that’s a neutron with its previously free string balled up together with one of the proton’s previously free strings (now also balled up) and the other proton string is twisted with an electron string (that free proton string and electron string twists are still full length))

    Two free protons   ~~~●~~~ ~~~●~~~  
    can combine and still be 2 protons   ~~~●●~~~   (that might look like 2 free neutrons but it is not because there are also balled up strings in the middle of the package holding them together.

    To clarify: two free neutrons
      ●~~~ ~~~●   that are now combined would look like this   ●●  

    If you throw another free proton into that 2 proton package   ~~~●●~~~ ~~~●~~~
    you will get one changing into a neutron when they combine   ~~~●●●~~~   that’s Helium-3

    If 4 free protons  
    ~~~●~~~ ~~~●~~~ ~~~●~~~ ~~~●~~~

    …grab each other 2 will change into neutrons   ~~~●●●●~~~

    And then the outer two that still have a free string can grab electrons…

    ---∗~~~●●●●~~~∗---   that’s regular Helium , it can also be called Helium-4

    If you understand the way this works… with a little thinking anyone can figure out isotopes.
    For instance why 3 protons would not make lithium-3 …

    i.e. why there can be extra neutrons but not just a bunch of protons (or extra protons)… we’ve just seen that above the way Helium-3 was created.
    Nucleus 3 can only be helium-3   ~~~●●●~~~   or Hydrogen-3 (tritium)   ●●●~~~  
    (Lithium-3 would be a nucleus with 3 protons and zero neutrons… and that can’t be a nucleus)

    “Lithium-4 contains three protons and one neutron. This is the shortest-lived known isotope of lithium. It decays by proton emission to helium-3 with half-life of about 10^−23 seconds.”

    ~~~●~~~ ~~~●~~~ ~~~●~~~ ~~~●~~~     (start with 4)

    ~~~●●●~~~ ~~~●~~~     (combine in only way possible to make 3 protons, 1 neutron… notice one proton is on the loose… not attached to nucleus, say goodbye, it’s unstable, eject it)


    Something like an atom with Protons, Neutrons and Electrons has to be the correct model.
    Things are different weights, different colors, different properties, etc. but everything has to be made out of the same thing.
    An atom is the way to do it.
    They almost have the model correct… but everything is actually just strings and tension

    Electron    ---∗---

    An electron is shaped like the metal spines of an umbrella (without the hinges or fabric of course).
    One string extents from where your hand would hold it up to the center of axis. There, eighteen strings (or radii) extent out in the same curved disc type shape as the umbrella. The last string goes straight up (the same length as all the rest) and connects with the field in space (space is made of the same stuff by the way).

    Notice the way some elements in vertical columns in the Periodic table chart have an atomic number with difference of 18 between them. Most of the chart is like that (notice how many columns there are).

    It’s because 18 is the determinant number in electron shell configuration.

    Every electron particle has 20 strings.

    Every particle starts with radii (strings) that are arranged in the dodecahedral axis shape
    That’s the vertices of the dodecahedron or the faces of the icosahedron (platonic solids.)
    This is a way stuff can form and happen automatically.

    One string is attached to the proton.

    One string connects with space (or an electron in the next outer shell).

    The other 18 strings form the electron disc.

    When electrons connect with each other they have 18 strings to play with.

    Check the larger noble gases: Argon 18, Krypton 36, Xenon 54, Radon 86, the amount of electrons in outermost shells will always sum to 18, the first three even have atomic numbers that are multiples of eighteen. Three groups of six radii from one electron can form (along with seven other electrons) the corners of a cube or the "Octet Rule" and seal off the package.

    Important note: Electrons are actually particles but they (the strings they are made from) form a mesh-like cage around the nucleus. They are also held in place by string connections to the protons.
    An electron is actually not moving… only the vibrations that are traveling around the strings are moving… and that’s what everyone mistakenly thinks an electron is.

    Electrons (particles) cannot orbit around a nucleus.

    The protons are stationary and the (multiple) electrons that supposedly are orbiting would require a massive amount of bearings and axles. And they would also interfere with each others orbits.
    You can’t use “force” as the holder (or carrier) because any force is also made from particles or their connection.

    To make matters worse… an equatorial orbit (supposedly happening) would need something like a circular track around the proton (actually the nucleus as a whole) with a sliding connection. That’s ridiculous.

    Proton    ~~~●~~~

    The proton is 20 strings (like everything else) one string radii is attached to a neutron, one is attached to a electron and the other 18 remaining string radii are balled up or collapsed.

    If the strings collapse in groups of three each that would make 6 groups (3 * 6 = 18) or six types of (what they call) Quarks.
    And if they collapse in groups of six each that would make 3 groups (6 * 3 = 18) or three (what they call) Quarks in three flavors.
    Maybe the grouping during collapse happens in different numbers like… 3, 6 and 9 …that still sums to 18 strings.
    The jury is still out on all of this Quark business. When they smash up protons they assume they have found different subatomic particles because of the different weights. That is just a different number of strings being smashed apart.

    If you magnified a proton until it was the size of the dot above the letter “i” then the strings could be compared to something a lot finer than the web of a spider extending out a few hundred meters. Fine enough where eighteen strings can curl into a space the size of the proton and have a spaghetti ball type configuration with a very loose string (or filament) pack.

    It is the way to make the most universe with the least amount of material. And only one type of material.

    Neutron    ●~~~

    A neutron is the same as proton but with 19 string radii balled up or collapsed. And when it is in the nucleus all 20 are collapsed (although one of the 20 is collapsed in unison with a proton string)

    One Proton string and one Neutron string balled up or collapsed together is called a Meson.

    neutron proton electron

    neutron proton electron on the loose =     ●— —●— —∗—
    neutron + proton + electron combined =    ●●—∗—


    A Neutrino is a completely balled up or collapsed particle (all 20 strings) or a group of completely balled up particles ●● NOT connected to the field or anything else.
    The speed of light is completely irrelevant to a Neutrino. The speed of light is field stuff, the neutrino is on its own.
    You could say the Neutrino is in the “ultimate time” zone.

  • Yes, I know, those were just what the call “examples.”
    The point of the comment was about what string are made from. There was no need to give a complete explanation of the way neutrons and protons combine was there? It was NOT a chemistry lesson.
    But anyway — my theory actually will give you the ultimate reason how N / P combine.
    Check here…
    “isotopes and nucleus formations / construction”….

  • Skysurfer 777

    That is a brilliant way to view it. The “smallest partical” being space. It would be interesting to realize that the smallest partical isn’t made up of matter at all. I just had a vision of a Big Bang type situation, starting at this “smallest particle” and blasting out, ever expanding, to create us and the universe (we are the universe technically). Not to say I think this is true, but an interesting vision indeed. Since a child I have been obsessed with what’s deep inside, because it only makes sense that a scale could forever become smaller. It also makes sense that there’s always something bigger. So, my theory has always been that if you go in enough, you could find yourself again (or your present scale) in another dimension (I know, madness). In this reality of paradox, would it be so crazy to think maybe WE are apart of what makes up an atom…that it’s All interdependent. With there being an uncountable amount of atoms in reality, the amount of possible dimensions/realities/universes would be infinite. Maybe there is no beginning or end…just different ways for the energy to dance. 🙂 maybe it’s infinite, and this life is a lot more than wake up, work, come home, sleep. As I always say, where the f are we?

  • Skysurfer 777

    That is an incredible idea! I have had that thought before, and I’m glad you reminded me. The universe to me is a program. The laws of physics were programmed, the trees are programmed, we are programmed, our atoms are programmed, etc. I Do believe in God, in that God is that unit that began the programming. Why is it that it all does its job and everything works out perfectly? Did you know a large tree will literally give water to a smaller tree if it’s close by? The way bees pollinate. The way we were given one natural earth and we were able to create this modern world? It is a program, a beautiful one at that. Sorry to go off topic (as I usually do), but yes I do believe, at the core, it is all made of one thing, and a lack of that one thing. Amazing for an 8th grader (I see that you’re now a bit older :-p)

  • Skysurfer 777

    This is fascinating. I wish I could understand completely. I’ll read it a couple more times :-p.

  • Skysurfer 777

    Yep, I know what you’re saying. We are in space. We are not simply in our homes on our computers…we are on a spherical rock in the middle of deep space, hurdling through it at immense speed. Sometimes I find it hard to sleep when I conveiniently remember that far enough down, underneath me in my bed, is the sky once again and the empty vacuum of space. Gotta love it :-).

  • Gina Schilleci

    How about what we are? We are creatures inside planets(even though we aren’t really a . “part” of it) inside solar systems inside galaxies inside universes inside whatever the Hell else we’re a part of, what if these quarks and all that crap have minds of their own, and they already discovered what they are made of, but don’t know about us, and the universe thinks that we are quarks, who the Hell knows?

  • Wow… this is great.
    Your thinking is NOT affected by all the ridiculous ideas of others.

  • The basic rules I have noticed are:
    Do not add any two different statements together.
    If you find anything is contradictory just ignore it

  • PY

    That also is consistent with the idea that for consciousness to exist it does not require a physical body.

    I mean, fully thinking rational beings as we biologically understand them had not existed on this planet for a long time. For a long time all there was was not alive. Then came primitive life forms (i don’t know the order) like the protozoa, bacteria, and so on, until humans.

    Of course life could have existed before in other places in the universe. But I doubt it existed at the moment everything started – if we believe the big bang to be the beginning of it all.

    This all means that there was a thought before there was a body with a brain to produce it. Eventually, the bodies available evolved to such an extent that thoughts could manifest themselves.

    There are theories in physics – that are even back by experimental evidence – that show that consciousness and thought need not be entangled with matter. I think your ideas are in consonance with that.

    Why should we believe this physical reality to be all there is to the universe? Why should we believe that there is no consciousness without a body, if consciousness might have been the origin of matter itself? It is hard not to think that there must be consciousnesses that exist with no body, and others like ourselves that are in a body.

    Finally, if all energy is to be conserved, and matter is energy, in the end energy was created by though (i.e. consciousness), then we cannot expect our own consciousness to vanish just because the matter in which it lived (i.e. our bodies) died. Consciousness has to be conserved after death.

    You know, I am a huge skeptical of all of this post-death mumbo jumbo. But I couldn’t help but notice the ideas you posted here seem to have a deep and strange agreement with the existence of consciousness without a living body.

  • pyro777

    Those are questions I’d like to have answered someday. Discovering how everything began, everything that came before the big bang, and how reality came to be. People like to say the big bang is where everything began but I really doubt that, I see it as an expansion of what was already there.

  • So you think everything was already here but it was clumped together in one spot — and ready to expand? How could that happen. The expansion stuff, was that just waiting around until it was good and ready to expand everything?

    Have you ever looked through a telescope and noticed how much stuff there is out there?

  • IvanRider

    At some point, all the structure of matter and energy comes down to rearrangement of the third fundamental: information. Which implies an informer. This bears more than just philosophical implications; it bears theological ones.

  • Energy has a structure? Can you explain that?

  • pyro777

    Mass can be packed into infinitely small amounts, black holes are proof of this. Who’s to say that “collapse” of the universe would be so different. Just the universe shrinking after all the stars all burn out till it’s “indefinately small” again waiting for the cycle to begin anew.

  • “Mass can be packed into infinitely small amounts, black holes are proof of this.”
    — that is wrong and it has never been proved nor ever will be proved.

    There may be black holes — but there would be a literally solid mass involved and that would be incompressible. If you have a bunch of guitars — the strings will be able to vibrate. But if you took all the strings off and threw them into the back of a truck it would be a solid, inert lump, unable to vibrate. The same thing is happening with a black hole — it is literally solid so there is no chance of vibration and that’s what energy is — so it is inert.

    A black hole cannot be a point either. Something the size of a basketball or larger sounds doable.
    Nothing is going to compress or collapse into a point — you cannot compress stuff that is literally solid. If the Earth collapsed it would be a golfball size.

    Normal matter = Earth
    Earth as a neutron star = football field size
    Earth as black hole material = golfball sized

  • pyro777

    You’re comparing guitars to black holes now? You’re doing a piss poor job of making your point.

    As I said before, black holes form from gravitational collapse. If it’s just a small star such as our sun they only collapse into a white Dwarf state, but, once large stars use up all their energy their gravity overwhelms them they collapse into themselves and taking the form of a black hole with their mass forming a single point as their center called a singularity.

  • It doesn’t matter how they form you freakin’ imbecile.
    I explained how they work.
    It does NOT matter what you said before — it is all just guess work — and your guesses are really bad.

  • Yes, you are an imbecile.
    You claimed stuff was proved that absolutely was not proved and never will be proved.

  • My hypothesis is – it is the all pervading consciousness which is the creator of all energy and matter in the universe. All living beings are also part of that consciousness.

  • pyro777

    And now you result to name calling which is proof that you lost. You have nothing valid to say thus you bring out the insults.