Layman in need of enlightenment

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by , 02-11-2019 at 06:04 PM (223 Views)
Quote Originally Posted by not_Fritz_Argelander View Post
Forum database crashed when I tried relying earlier but fortunately I had saved my reply

Quote Originally Posted by Clouded Out View Post
On one hand, I think I have a good layman's understanding of cosmology and particle physics but there's loads I don't understand in this forum section. I was able to get most of the matter-antimatter symmetry issue but am a bit confused by some of the quark issues.

As I get it, there are 6 types of quark: up, down, top, bottom, strange, charm.

As I understand it, none of these are the anti-mattter particles of any other. Therefore each of the 6 quarks has a corresponding anti-quark, making 12 types in total.
This is a difficult question for several reasons. 1) I think it points out some shortcomings of my posts. 2) It's a difficult question to answer in itself. One think I'd like to point out is that on the "types of quark" issue, it depends on how you count them. Up and down might be best thought of as a doublet in analogy to electron and electron neutrino. So check out this Wikipedia article which I think is a good place to start. (At least up to and not including the "Theoretical Aspects" when it gets heavy.)

Pay special attention to the section on particle content

The deuce of it is that the up and down quarks come in three different color charges: red, green, blue. So there are three different colors for each quark. There are 3 generations of quarks which come in pairs and 3 colors each then the antiparticles. Whether there are 3, 6, or 18 quarks depends on what you count as a different quark.

In general, though, are there any websites or free/low cost books that can get me beyond the layman stage? Taking a course is not an option because I am doing 3 jobs and will probably continue doing at least 2 if them when I "retire".
The difficulty in making a recommendation is that I don't know "where you are at" in terms of math and physics tolerance / enjoyment. So I'll make a number of recommendations and you can sort out what you like.

This is the easiest but it is also conceptually thin:

This is richer conceptually but free of math. If you look at the cover you'll see a graphic illustration at the problem and ambiguity in counting quarks: does a different color make a different quark?

This is a low cost intro with some equations:

My current preferred (and expensive) book for reference is by Bettini

There is also a text by David Griffiths that I was considering before I decided on the Bettini:

I used to recommend the book by Gordon Kane. It's showing its age though and that is why I recently added Bettini to my reference collection.
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