Inside the Knotty World of ‘Anyon’ Particles

In this month's "Quantized Column," Quanta Magazine's series in which top researchers explore the process of discovery, Frank Wilczek, Professor (1989–2000) and Member (1977–78) in the School of Natural Sciences and Nobel Laureate in Physics (2004), investigates and describes a new class of quantum particle that is about to emerge from the tangled considerations of quantum statistics:

Conceptually, quantum particles differ so significantly from their classical ancestors that a different name seems in order. Just as the quantum “qubit” was named by analogy to the classical “bit” of information, I will use the term “quarticle” (pronounced kwort-icle) for a quantum particle. This emphasis on the particle aspect (as opposed to “wavicle”) is appropriate, because in practice quantum physicists usually analyze quantum behavior by visualizing the behavior of particles, and then refining — and, if necessary, correcting — their picture until it works for quarticles.

Read more at Quanta.