There are just two weeks remaining in the NFL regular season — and, as expected, we’re getting much more clarity about which teams are most likely to make a run to the Super Bowl.Twelve teams will make the NFL playoffs. Four of them — New England, Denver, Indianapolis and Arizona — have clinched a position. Another seven — Seattle, Detroit, Green Bay, Dallas, Baltimore, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati — have at least an 80 percent chance of reaching the postseason. It’s more likely than not that one of these teams will be knocked out, but the playoffs aren’t as wide-open as they appeared a few weeks ago. The 12th spot will go to the winner of the NFC South.The real drama, however, will ensue once the playoffs begin. More than at earlier points in the season, there’s a clear top level of teams. It consists of the Patriots, Seahawks and Broncos.You could debate the order of these teams. FiveThirtyEight’s Elo ratings have the Patriots first, the Seahawks second and the Broncos third. Football Outsiders’ DVOA also has New England first, but the Broncos ahead of the Seahawks. Jeff Sagarin, of USAToday, has the teams in the same order as DVOA. Vegas point spreads imply that Seattle is the best team, followed by New England and Denver.But there’s reasonably clear separation between the top three and everyone else in the league. According to Elo, in fact, the gap between No. 3 Denver and No. 4 Arizona is wider than the gap between Arizona and No. 12 Philadelphia. Collectively, the Patriots, Seahawks and Broncos have a 62 percent chance of winning the Super Bowl.None of these teams is exactly a surprise. In fact, each one ranked in the top four in our preseason Elo ratings, which were based on the teams’ Elo ratings at the end of last year.More generally, this has been a year where the richer teams got richer and the poorer ones got poorer. If you take the preseason ratings and divide the teams into halves, 11 of the 16 teams in the top half of the ratings have seen their Elo ratings improve since the start of the year. But 10 of the 16 teams in the bottom half have seen their ratings decline.The Elo ratings generally haven’t behaved like this in past seasons. The way the system is designed, a team is about equally likely to see its rating improve or decline, whatever rating it starts with.It’s probably premature to decipher any long-term trends from this season’s results. But perhaps there are some factors nudging the NFL away from the parity we’ve grown used to in recent seasons. Rules changes have allowed great quarterbacks to be more dominant. Access to information, technology and analytics may be enabling teams with great coaching, scouting and management to maintain more of an edge even as player personnel turns over.As for the rest of the teams in the playoff hunt, we’ve reached the point where playoff outcomes are more deterministic and less probabilistic, with several opportunities for teams to clinch or eliminate themselves from playoff position with wins or losses this week. Mike Beouy and Reuben Fischer-Baum’s column on playoff implications has all the detail you’ll want on these, but here’s how Elo has the numbers:There are some subtle differences between the playoff odds that Elo assigns and the ones that Beouy and Fischer-Baum do. This is partly because they use different measures of team strength and partly because the Beouy/Fischer-Baum system has a more complete handling of the NFL’s complex tiebreaker rules. But the overall message is largely the same; each system has the 11 teams I mentioned before with an 80 percent chance or greater of making the postseason.However, it matters significantly how the teams are seeded. This is most acute in the case of the Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals are currently one game ahead of the Seahawks in the NFC West, but Arizona lost to Seattle earlier this season, so Seattle would move ahead on the tiebreaker if they beat Arizona this weekend at University of Phoenix Stadium. Elo has Seattle as only narrow favorites in that game, but Vegas odds have the Seahawks favored by 8 points.If Arizona wins, it will clinch home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Arizona holds the tiebreaker advantage over the rest of the conference, partly by virtue of having beaten Dallas and Detroit earlier this season. Uniquely, this advantage would also extend to the Super Bowl, which is being held in Glendale, Arizona, this year. The Cardinals would become the first team ever to play a Super Bowl in its home stadium (although the San Francisco 49ers came close when Super Bowl XIX was held in Stanford, California.)So even though they’ve clinched a playoff spot, this weekend’s game couldn’t be more important for Arizona. The Elo simulations give them a 37 percent chance of winning the Super Bowl if they win the NFC West, but just a 7 percent chance if they enter as a wild card team instead.Elo point spreadsRecord against point spread: 113-93-3 on season (8-7 in Week 15)Straight-up record: 156-67-1 on season (12-4 in Week 15)The dominance of teams like New England, Seattle and Denver has made it easier for Elo to “call” winners correctly this year; the team favored by the system has won about 70 percent of the time this season.Elo also has about a 55 percent winning percentage against closing Vegas point spreads. But as we’ve said every week, we still don’t think you should place bets using Elo, at least not without considering a lot of other information. Although we didn’t publish Elo ratings before this season, historically they would have picked only about 51 percent of games against the point spread.A 55 percent winning percentage sounds impressive, but there’s still a lot of noise in the sample of 206 games. (This total excludes games that ended in pushes and cases where the Elo and Vegas lines exactly matched one another.) If a system’s long-run winning percentage was 51 percent, there’s still a 12 percent chance it would finish with a 55 percent winning percentage or better in a sample of that size, according to a binomial distribution.Elo has mostly been right about the Cardinals, however — and it’s the Arizona-Seattle game that will tell us the most this weekend about who’s going to the Super Bowl.
EXCLUSIVE Tribune Media Services will today launch its new Kindle-specific consumer and personal finance magazine, Cash: Personal Finance for Real People.Cash will be TMS’ third weekly to be distributed exclusively on Amazon’s Kindle, joining Opinionated, a social and political opinion magazine launched in March, and a collaboration with pop culture site Popmatters.com. The magazine will be published weekly on Mondays, with a cost of $.49 per issue and $1.49 for a monthly subscription. “Cash is a very timely new tool created to help American consumers evaluate their options for spending, saving and investing decisions they confront each day,” said Steve Tippie, TMS vice president of marketing and licensing and the magazine’s publisher. “To meet this need, we pull the best advice and information from dozens of sources to tailor a continually-updated handbook to being a smart consumer.”The magazine will draw material from financial experts and publications, including contributors U.S. News and World Report, Kiplinger’s Consumer News Service, Andrew Leckey’s Successful Investing, with its first issue available as a free trial download and subscription basis for Kindle customers.Since its release in 2007, Amazon’s Kindle device has sold more than a quarter of a million units, with texts that account for 10 percent of Amazon’s book sales. TMS must bank on current Kindle users for the release of Cash, since the Kindle is currently out of stock for 11 to 13 weeks over this holiday season, set to appear again in February 2009.
“Very rarely do we explicitly copy or interpret a show onto the pages of the magazine,” John Loughlin, EVP and general manager of Hearst Magazines, told FOLIO:’s supplement Audience Development (AD) in February 2012. “The magazines that we create in partnership out of television activity have the look, feel and essence of the television brand but in no way are they imitations of it. They break new ground and broaden the experience for the consumer.”See Also: On the Tube and On the Page: Television-Branded Publications HGTV Magazine first went to market with a test issue in October 2011—at the time, the publication had a rate base of just 450,000. Similarly, Food Network Magazine, which launched its first official issue in 2009 and was the first joint venture between Hearst and Scripps, has seen similar success, boasting its seventh rate base bump by the summer of 2012, with its 11th to come in 2014.“It’s one thing to tune in once a week and say ‘I like this show’ but it’s another thing to say I like this brand enough that I will spend $18, which is our introductory price on Food Network Magazine,” Loughlin told AD.Partnering with a television network has its perks when it comes to promotion. HGTV Magazine generated 25,000 orders after 15-second and 30-second commercials aired on the channel. Promotional messages about the publications also appear on the bottom of the screen during television programs. According to Loughlin, the overall viewing size of the audience, instead of ratings, is what really maters.“There is not a hugely tight correlation between day-to-day, week-to-week or period-to-period ratings and the circulation of the magazine,” Loughin said to AD. “Consumers who are watching television proactively tune in on a Tuesday, might not on a Wednesday and come back to it Saturday—it’s really about the consumer’s discretionary time. Consumers order a magazine or pay for a magazine and that’s the key differentiator, the fact that they’re paying for it. It also comes once a month, and because it doesn’t have the same kind of shelf life that an episode of Iron Chef or Oprah’s former daily television show, studies have shown consumers come back multiple times. The reality is there isn’t a tight correlation between ratings and circulation.”Stay updated on the latest FOLIO: news, follow us on Facebook & Twitter! Hearst’s TV-tied brands are seeing their rate bases jump again.The company announced Tuesday that Food Network Magazine will see its 11th consecutive rate base increase since officially launching in 2009, with sister title HGTV Magazine increasing its rate base for the third time since launching its first official issue in June 2012.With the July/August 2013 issue, HGTV will raise its rate base to 800,000, and the title will increase again to 1 million with the January/February 2014 issue. Big sister Food Network Magazine will increase to 1.55 million with its July/August 2013 issue and will raise its rate base twice in 2014—to 1.6 million with the January/February issue, and another bump to 1.65 million with the July/August edition.Hearst publishes these titles in a partnership with Scripps Interactive Networks—the HGTV and Food Network channels are distributed by Scripps to almost 100 million households.
WILMINGTON, MA — At last week’s meeting, the Wilmington School Committee unanimously approved $605,000 in capital requests for the 2019-2020 school year.The capital requests included:$180,000 for projector & interactive whiteboard replacements at the Middle School$100,000 for a wireless upgrade at the Middle School$100,000 for laptop replacements at the North & West$100,000 for a new datacenter for the district$75,000 for 80 desktops and monitor replacements in the Middle School Tech Labs$30,000 for a PA system upgrade at the six lower schools$20,000 for Chromebook Carts for MCAS testing“The use of technology continues to play a significant role in our schools,” Town Manager Jeff Hull stressed in his recent budget message. “Capital expenditures in the amount of $605,000 are recommended in the upcoming year’s budget to help ensure Wilmington’s students can develop essential skills for the 21st century.”“The 18-year-old Middle School requires an upgrade to its Wi-Fi infrastructure. As use of technology continues to expand, maintaining connectivity is key,” said Hull. “The replacement of projectors and whiteboards is proposed, as the existing projects with be 10 years old in fiscal year 2020 and do not have the level of resolution as compared with current projects.”Hull also noted that the current laptops and desktops at the North and West are at least five years old, while the upgrades to the school system’s data center will allow for “automatic data balancing, greater reliability and data protection, with capacity for data and computing growth.”Residents will vote on each capital request at the Annual Town Meeting in May.(NOTE: The cover photo is from Airgoz Aerial Photography.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWilmington School System Receives $20K State Grant For Safety & Security UpgradesIn “Education”VIDEO: Watch This Week’s School Committee MeetingIn “Education”SCHOOL COMMITTEE NEWS: 5 Things That Happened At Wednesday Night’s MeetingIn “Education”
BSE closes points 178.35 up on Feb 112.2K views00:00 / 00:00- 00:00:0000:00BSE closes points 178.35 up on Feb 112.2K viewsBusinessNew Delhi, Feb 11 (ANI): Trading at the Bombay Stock Exchange today closed 178.35 points up to stand at 28,533.97. At the National Stock Exchange the Nifty closed 61.85 points up to stand at 8,627.40. FORTIS and NCC were among the top gainers of Group A with an increase of 20.00% and 19.97% along with PIPAVAV DOC and HCC with an increase of 15.96% and 11.74% respectively, while the top losers of Group A include SRF and PMCFIN with a decrease of 5.50% and 4.94% along with SADBHAV ENGINEERING LTD. and MUTHOOT FINANCE LTD. with a decrease of 4.63% and 3.04% at the close of the markets. The Auto sector is up 152.22 points at 19,097.69 while the banking sector is up 225.47 points at 21,689.54 and the reality sector is up 12.80 points at 1,715.53. The Indian currency is up 0.08% at Rs 62.23 per dollar.Ventuno Web Player 4.50New Delhi, Feb 11 (ANI): Trading at the Bombay Stock Exchange today closed 178.35 points up to stand at 28,533.97. At the National Stock Exchange the Nifty closed 61.85 points up to stand at 8,627.40. FORTIS and NCC were among the top gainers of Group A with an increase of 20.00% and 19.97% along with PIPAVAV DOC and HCC with an increase of 15.96% and 11.74% respectively, while the top losers of Group A include SRF and PMCFIN with a decrease of 5.50% and 4.94% along with SADBHAV ENGINEERING LTD. and MUTHOOT FINANCE LTD. with a decrease of 4.63% and 3.04% at the close of the markets. The Auto sector is up 152.22 points at 19,097.69 while the banking sector is up 225.47 points at 21,689.54 and the reality sector is up 12.80 points at 1,715.53. The Indian currency is up 0.08% at Rs 62.23 per dollar.
Prothom Alo IllustrationTwelve more suspected drug traders were killed in reported gunfights with members of law enforcement agencies early Monday as anti-narcotics crackdown continues across the country.Of them, two were killed in Cumilla and Pirojpur respectively and one each in Dhaka, Natore, Pabna and Chandpur.Besides, two drug traders in Satkhira and one each in Jhenaidah and Munshiganj were killed in reported gunfights between two groups of drug traders.According to reports reaching the UNB news desk, a total of 105 people were killed in ‘gunfights’ across the country since 12 May.Read more: ‘No innocent person killed in gunfights’In Cumilla, two suspected drug traders were killed in separate incidents of gunfights in Sadar Dakhshin and Debidwar upazilas early in the morning.Enamul Haque Dolon, 35, son of late Abdullah Bhuiyan aka Babul Miah of Bhinglabari area, and accused in 12 drug cases, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Bhinglabari Beribadh area of Debidwar upazila.Police recovered 10kg hemp, 100 yaba tablets, one pipe gun and a cartridge from the spot.Besides, Nuru Miah, 55, son of late Abdul Ohab of Kalikapur area of Sadar Dakhshin upazila, and accused in 13 drug cases, was killed in another gunfight with police in Goliyarai area.Read more: ‘Crackdown on drug peddlers to continue’Police recovered 40kg hemp, one pistol and bullet from the spot.Three policemen were injured.In Pirojpur, a suspected drug trader, Wahiduzzaman Ohid, 50, from Nesarabad upazila, accused in eight drug cases, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Kourikhara village of Sadar upazila around 2:00am.GM Abul Kalam Azad, additional superintendent of Pirojpur police, said that police recovered one pipe gun, 175 yaba tablets, 50gm hemp and four cartridges from the spot.Read more: NHRC worried at ‘gunfight’ killingsBesides, Mizanur Rahman, 35, an accused in six cases, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Gotichara village of Mathbaria upazila around 1:30am.Police recovered 2kg hemp, 50 yaba tablets and four sharp weapons from the spot, said Mostafa Swapan, additional superintendent of Mathbaria.Three policemen were also injured in the incident.In Dhaka, an unidentified drug trader was killed in a reported gunfight with members of Detective Branch (DB) of police in Mirpur area of the capital.Read more: Fakhrul fears if anti-drug drive to be used to eliminate oppositionThe DB team recovered a pistol and five thousand yaba tablets from the spot, said SI Mizan of Rupnagar.In Natore, a suspected drug trader, Khalekuddin, was killed in a reported gunfight with members of Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) at Baghnagarkandi in Singra upazila around 2:00am.Police recovered several drugs, one pistol and some bullets from the spot.Read more: ‘Drug dealers in parliament itself’Two RAB men were injured in the incident.In Satkhira, police recovered bullet-ridden bodies of two suspected drug traders from Bankal-Agunpur area at Alipur union in Sadar upazila around 7:00am.One of the deceased was identified as Khalilur Rahman Puti, 35, son of Azgar Ali, of Bhomra village.Prabir Kumar Das, sub-inspector of Sadar police station, said that on information, a team of police recovered the bodies from the area.They also recovered a one shooter gun, one bullet, a bottle of liquor and 105 bottles of Phensidyl.Read more: Law enforcers use firearms in self-defence: Home ministerThe SI said the drug traders might have been killed in a gunfight between two groups of drug traders over sharing drug money.In Jhenaidah, Farid, 27, son of late Mohammad Aliof Paglakanai in the district town, and also an accused in nine drug cases, was killed in a reported gunfight between two groups of drug traders at Jar village around 1:00am.Emdadul Haque Sheikh, officer-in-charge of Sadar police station, said on information about a gunfight between the groups, a petrol team reached the spot.Sensing the presence of law enforcers, the drug traders fled the scene.Later, police recovered the bullet-hit body from the spot.Besides, police recovered a foreign pistol and 20 bottles of Phensidyl.In Pabna, Ejjat Ali Pramanik, 28, an accused in 14 cases, including that of murder, robbery, abduction and extortion, was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Teghori Mahalla in Bera municipal area around 1:30am.Zihadul Kabir, superintendent of Pabna police, said police recovered a local shutter gun, four bullets and some drugs from the spot.Five policemen were injured in the incident.In Chandpur, a suspected drug trader, Abu Sayeed Badsha aka Lal Badsha, 45, son of Absur Rashid, of Purba Gobindopur village in Faridganj upazila was killed in a reported gunfight with police at Boichatoli around 2:00am.Shah Alam, officer-in-charge of Faridganj police station, said police recovered 111 yaba tablets, a one-barrel pistol, three crude bombs and four bullets from the spot adding that Badsha was an accused in 10 cases with different police stations.Four policemen were injured in the gunfight.In Munshiganj, Sumon Biswas aka Kana Sumon, 36, son of Babul Biswas, an accused in 25 cases, was killed in a reported gunfight between two group of drug traders at Murma village in Sadar upazila around 2:30am, said Gazi Salauddin, officer-in-charge of Sadar police station.The law enforcement’s version of these events was, however, not verified independently as no version of the incident was available immediately either from any witnesses or from any members of the victim’s family.
Stacy ThreattToday at the Texas State Capitol, electors will cast their votes for president of the United States. The expectation, of course, is that they will vote for the candidate who won the state’s popular vote, President-elect Donald Trump.As most of us know, on Election Day we don’t exactly cast our ballots for a candidate. We vote for who will be among the state’s 38 electors in the Electoral College. Because more Texans voted for Republican Donald Trump, the electors will be folks chosen by the Republican Party of Texas. “Electors make some sort of pledge when they accept the job from their party, because there is a party slate of electors,” said George Edwards, a Texas A&M political science professor and Electoral College expert. “So, there is an expectation the electors will support the candidate of that party.”Edwards stresses that this is an expectation, not a rule. The electors may have made a pledge to the party, but Edwards says the U.S. Constitution has different ideas about what electors can do.“At the time of the writing of the Constitution there were no political parties. States didn’t vote as blocks necessarily,” Edwards said. “So, they expected the electors to be mediators between the public and the selection of the president, and they expected them to exercise discretion.”Some Texas electors want to use that discretion this year. Some say they aren’t going to vote for Donald Trump. Critics call these electors “faithless electors.” They call themselves “Hamilton electors.”One of the electors not voting for Trump is Art Sisneros.He told The Texas Standard a few weeks ago that at first he didn’t know this is what the founders’ had in mind.“I didn’t really understand the original intent and much of the history behind the Electoral College,” he said. “So I began to discover that after I won. I began to discover that after I won. I began to really examine.”After some examination, Sisneros decided to resign. He says voting for Trump would be a “dishonor to God.”Christopher Suprun – another Texas elector – wrote an op-ed in The New York Times asking other Republican electors to join him in voting for someone other than Trump.All this is why state Rep. John Raney, R-Bryan, introduced a bill, House Bill 543, for next year’s session that would fine faithless electors $5,000 for violating their party’s pledge.“I think it’s important that people who pledge to do something. such as pledge to vote for the nominee of the party, whichever party it might be, that they then follow through and do that,” Raney told KUT.Other states have similar laws binding electors to the state’s popular vote, but they have never been tested. Edwards says those laws are flat-out unconstitutional.He also says Raney’s bill won’t really solve a problem. Throughout American history, he says, 99 percent of electors have voted for their party’s nominee.Edwards says that’s not a sign that electors need stricter rules. He says it’s just a sign that our Electoral College isn’t operating the way our Founding Fathers’ wanted. Copyright 2016 KUT-FM. To see more, visit KUT-FM. Share
Channing D. Phillips is set to be the District’s new U.S. Attorney. (U.S. Department of Justice)On Oct. 8, President Obama selected Channing D. Phillips, a former acting U.S. Attorney for the District and the senior counsel to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, as the city’s next top prosecutor. D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D) recommended Phillips to the president.While Phillips will be taking on a largely non-political job, he will be expected to make a major decision on a leading former officeholder in the city.Former D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray has been a leading target of an investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s office since early 2011 for his 2010 mayoral campaign’s violation of election laws. Several of his close associates have taken pleas from the U.S. Attorney’s office but Gray hasn’t been charged with any crime.Ward 8 advisory neighborhood commissioner Mary Cuthbert, who has been involved in the city’s politics since the 1960s, didn’t mention Gray by name but said that Phillips needs to “close cases that are now open.”“Those cases have been hanging on a string and they need to be closed,” Cuthbert said.Leo Alexander, who ran against Gray in 2010 for mayor, agrees with Cuthbert. “Phillips needs to close the book on the Vince Gray investigation,” Alexander said. “The investigation is a mockery of justice and a waste of time. I am no big fan of Vince Gray but the city suffered under his leadership because of the investigation that hasn’t achieved its objective.”Gray ran for re-election in 2014 but lost in the April 1 primary that year to present D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser (D). One of Gray’s opponents, D.C. Council member Jack Evans (D-Ward 2), has publicly called for the U.S. Attorney’s office’s investigation of the former mayor to wrap up.Cohen said that he wasn’t insensitive to the concerns of many District residents regarding the 2010 mayoral campaign investigation. “There are some important cases that I wish I could see through to their conclusions, but I have complete confidence in the team at the U.S. Attorney’s Office to follow through and do justice for the people of the District,” he said.Johnny Barnes, a civil rights attorney in the District and the former executive director of the ACLU of the Nation’s Capital, agrees with the sentiment in the community that the Gray matter should be closed. “The former U.S. Attorney [Machen] went beyond the role of the U.S. Attorney,” Barnes said. “I don’t think it is good to mix politics with law enforcement and the Gray matter is antiquated.”Vincent Cohen Jr., the acting U.S. Attorney, will leave office on Oct. 18. Cohen held the position for only six months and prior to that worked under U.S. Attorney Ronald Machen for five years as the principal assistant U.S. Attorney.The District’s U.S. Attorney’s office is largest in the country and deals with issues, as Cohen told the AFRO recently, from “Benghazi to Barry Farm.”Phillips, a graduate of the University of Virginia and the Howard University School of Law, will have to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate before he permanently assumes his post. He is a 16-year veteran of the U.S. Attorney’s office, starting in 1994 as an assistant U.S. Attorney and rising in the ranks to be the principal assistant U.S. Attorney from 2004-2009 and as the acting U.S. Attorney from May 2009-Febuary 2010. He has worked with the Justice Department in senior-level positions since 2011.Phillips is a native Washingtonian and is the son of the late Rev. Channing E. Phillips, who was the first Black to have his name submitted for a major party presidential nomination in 1968 at the Democratic Party convention in Chicago.
(PhysOrg.com) — Physicists in Italy have discovered the first evidence of a rare nucleus that doesn’t exist in nature and lives for just 10-10 seconds before decaying. It’s a type of hypernucleus that, like all nuclei, contains an assortment of neutrons and protons. But unlike ordinary nuclei, hypernuclei also contain at least one hyperon, a particle that consists of three quarks, including at least one strange quark. Hypernuclei are thought to form the core of strange matter that may exist in distant parts of the universe, and could also allow physicists to probe the inside of the nucleus. The FINUDA experiment is located at one of the two interaction points of the DAFNE collider at INFN-LNF. As Elena Botta, a lead collaborator in the study, explained, DAFNE produces electron and positron beams. When these beams collide nearly head-on, they produce the phi meson (Φ), which decays with a 50% probability into a charged pair of K and anti-K mesons. FINUDA’s interaction point contains an octagonal prism with eight targets along the sides. When the anti-K meson interacts with a lithium nucleus in one of these targets, it can simultaneously produce a 6ΛH hypernucleus and a π+ meson of a particular energy. If scientists detect this particular meson, they’ve detected a signature of the strange nucleus formation. As Botta explained, 6ΛH production involves a two-step mechanism to decrease the number of protons in the lithium isotope, 6Li, from three to one, which produces hydrogen. Once produced, the neutron-rich 6ΛH hypernuclei slow down inside the target, and after 10-10 seconds they decay at rest into a π- meson and a 6He nucleus. The π- meson also has a particular energy, and scientists can easily detect it to give the signature of the decay. So both the formation and the decay of 6ΛH hypernuclei can be detected by searching for events with the presence of these particular π+ and π- mesons. Strange matterAs the first evidence for 6ΛH hypernuclei, the results could shed light on strange matter, which is hypothesized to exist at the center of ultra-dense neutron stars. The physicists hope to investigate strange matter further by producing strange nuclear systems.“Hypernuclei can be interpreted as the core of strange matter,” Botta told PhysOrg.com. “In particular, the possibility to produce strange nuclear systems containing two Λ particles will allow us to study the interaction between strange particles.”Hypernuclei could also serve as a useful tool to investigate the current model of nuclear structure, in which protons and neutrons are arranged in a stable configuration. “The fact that a hypernucleus has a strange quark does give it interesting characteristics compared to normal nuclei, since it allows the component L particle to act as a probe that can go very deep into the nucleus to test the description that the single particle shell model gives of nuclear matter,” Botta said. “In this respect, the study of hypernuclear physics allows us to get information not directly accessible otherwise.”She added that other hypernuclei with large neutron-to-proton ratios could exist in a stable state, even though ordinary neutron-rich nuclei are theoretically unstable. Neutron-rich hypernuclei seem to be an exception because of the way they modify the structure of a nucleus and increase its lifetime. During an upcoming experiment at the Japan Proton Accelerator Research Complex (J-PARC), physicists plan to search for 6ΛH as well as for other neutron-rich hypernuclei, such as lithium 10 Lambda (10ΛLi). Journal information: Physical Review Letters The particular hypernucleus investigated here, called “hydrogen six Lambda” (6ΛH), was first predicted to exist in 1963. Now, in a study published in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters, physicists working in the FINUDA experiment at the Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare – Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati (INFN-LNF) in Frascati, Italy, have reported finding the first evidence for the particle. The FINUDA collaboration’s analysis of millions of events has turned up three events for the rare hypernucleus. Strange propertiesAs its name suggests, 6ΛH is a large type of hydrogen nucleus that consists of six particles: four neutrons, one proton, and one Lambda (Λ) hyperon. Since an ordinary hydrogen nucleus contains one proton and no neutrons, hydrogen nuclei that contain one or more neutrons are sometimes called “heavy hydrogen.” The most common types of heavy hydrogen are deuterium (which has one neutron) and tritium (which has two neutrons). Since 6ΛH has four neutrons plus a L hyperon, physicists refer to it as “heavy hyperhydrogen.”The L hyperon, which consists of one up, one down, and one strange quark, does an even more interesting thing to 6ΛH: it increases its lifetime from 10-22 seconds (the lifetime of the hypernucleus core 5H without L) to 10-10 seconds. When scientists first discovered the L hyperon in 1947, they observed a similarly longer lifetime than predicted for this “strange” object. That observation led to the idea of the existence of the strange quark, with strangeness being the property that causes the quark to live so long.DetectionWithout the L hyperon, it would likely be impossible for physicists to directly observe a hydrogen nucleus with four neutrons, since such a heavy isotope is very difficult to produce and has a very short lifetime. Another hypernucleus, 4ΛH, which has two neutrons instead of four, is more easily produced than 6ΛH in similar experiments and has been detected many times. But detecting evidence of 6ΛH is much more difficult. The 27 million collision events analyzed by the FINUDA collaboration represents about one full year of continuous data-taking from an experiment that spanned several years. Theoretically, the formation probability of 6ΛH is at least 100 times smaller than that of 4ΛH. Explore further Nuclear physics incorporates a ‘strange’ flavor More information: M. Agnello, et al. “Evidence for Heavy Hyperhydrogen 6ΛH.” Physical Review Letters 108, 042501 (2012) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.108.042501 Copyright 2012 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. A view of one of the three events found by FINUDA: a schematic frontal view of the apparatus is shown, and the two blue lines represent the two ‘pi’ mesons moving along opposite bent trajectories in the magnetic field of the apparatus. Image credit: FINUDA collaboration Citation: Physicists discover evidence of rare hypernucleus, a component of strange matter (2012, February 17) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-02-physicists-evidence-rare-hypernucleus-component.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. 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