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Measurements with Record Precision Reveal a Smaller Atomic Mass of the Proton

A major endeavor and achievement within science is the measurement and determination of the properties of the basic building blocks of matter. Such fundamental constants shape a network of integral parameters that underlie the structure and order of nature. Understanding these elemental parameters is therefore crucial to developing a precise and unified description of nature and all of its interconnected relationships and symmetries. The proton mass is one such fundamental constant as it is correlated with most other parameters of atomic physics, like the Rydberg constant.

It contains deep unifying symmetries as well, such as those discovered by physicist Nassim Haramein; where, for example, the zero-point vacuum energy contained within a proton volume is equal to the mass of all protons in the observable universe. Like a hologram, in which the smallest unit cut from the plate encoding an image can reproduce the entire image, it is as if the information of all protons in the universe are interacting to produce the properties of any one proton. This property is called the holographic mass of the proton, and when the holographic mass is related to the zero-point mass-energy of the surface area of a proton-sized volume of the quantum vacuum -- another holographic relationship – the precise mass of the proton is produced.

These remarkable results, expounded in the manuscript Quantum Gravity and the Holographic Mass (QGHM), and further elaborated to calculate the electron mass in the paper The Electron and the Holographic Mass Solution, demonstrate how a quantized structure of spacetime geometry – that is unified physics -- and profound symmetry and interconnection produce one of the most important and elemental properties of the basic building blocks of matter.

As a new break-through model in explaining the source of mass and atomic structure via quantum gravity, the QGHM solution awaits more precise measurements of the proton rest mass and charge radius to see if the values predicted by QGHM are observed. Such validation of the predicted values have been observed for the proton radius, as measurements performed after publication of QGHM brought the standard value of the proton charge radius even closer to that predicted by Haramein.

Now, an international team of researchers have performed a record-breaking precision measurement of the proton’s atomic mass, improving our current knowledge of the mass of the proton by a precision of 32 parts-per-trillion. With such high precision, the research team discovered that the proton is about 30 billionths of a percent less than previously thought. While such values sound minute and trivial to the average person, to physicists they can be quite ground-shaking, since so much importance rests on the precise values of these fundamental constants and parameters of nature.

The discovery of a smaller value for the atomic mass of the proton, following on the heels of the discovery of a smaller value for the radius, demonstrates that there is still some uncertainty in our knowledge regarding these fundamental values. It is possible that as the technological capabilities emerge to measure these primary natural constants with ever greater precision, physical models that predict these values based on first-principles, like Haramein’s QGHM solution, will gain ever greater empirical and observational support as measurements come to more closely match what is predicted.

Abstract – We report on the precise measurement of the atomic mass of a single proton with a purpose-built Penning-trap system. With a precision of 32 parts-per-trillion our result not only improves on the current CODATA literature value by a factor of three, but also disagrees with it at a level of about 3 standard deviations.

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