The revenge of “light” quarks, and the birth of protons (which are still among us) – Guido Tonelli /Courier TV

One millionth of a second after the Big Bang, the Universe is already trillions of kilometers in size (and is at a temperature of trillions of degrees). It is filled with a plasma of quarks and gluons: an enormous “molasses” in which nothing can condense. But a few microseconds later something decisive happens: the lightest quarks – the “last of the class” – manage to construct the protons into an ideal, virtually eternal structure: the same ones that make up the nuclei of our atoms.


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