# Do Particles of Fractional Charge Exist?

*Most recent answer: 05/11/2016*

- Tony Walker (age 72)

37615

Hello Tony,

I'll answer just two of your questions. There have been many experiments searching for fractional charge but so far none have shown up. There is a theory, namely the quark theory, that is consistent with charged 1/3 and 2/3 particles. Again, no free quarks have ever been seen.

If charged quarks existed they very likely would behave electrically just like electrons and protons, radiating when accelerated, having magnetic fields when moving etc.

LeeH

I read your first question as asking about some altogether different type of charge, not on the same number line as electrical charge. The answer to that is yes: we call one type of such "charge" the source of the chromodynamic force between quarks. The point is that there are several types of forces. We give different names to different ones. If we find other forces beyond the ones that we know about (the combined electroweak force, the QCD force, and the gravitational pseudo-force) then we'll need new names, and will try to integrate them into the same mathematical framework as the others.

With respect to repulsive gravity, the basic form of the theory (we're told) only allows for attractive "forces" between ordinary masses. If there some fixed mass density if "empty" space, however, exactly the same theory predicts an exponentially growing expansion of space, driven by a repulsive sort of effect. That appears to be going on now. There's good evidence that in the very early universe a similar inflation occurred, but much faster. That would have required a much higher energy density of empty space. Alternative explanations of that evidence do exist, and sorting this question out is an exciting research topic.

Mike W.

*(published on 05/11/2016)*