A new study conducted by a team of Hungarian researchers has apparently detected the presence of a fifth force of nature. Experts believe that this new development could revolutionize human understanding of physics. As per current knowledge, there are four forces of nature; gravity, electromagnetism, the weak nuclear and the strong force.

dark matter
Composite image of the Perseus galaxy cluster using data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, ESA’s XMM-Newton and Hitomi, a Japanese-led X-ray telescope. X-ray: NASA/CXO/Fabian

During the study, researchers at the Institute for Nuclear Research at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences analyzed the way in which an excited helium atom emitted light as it decayed. Researchers noted that the helium particles split at an unusual angle, a phenomenon that cannot be explained using the current theories in physics.

Scientists, presuming that it was not a result of a laboratory error, suggested that this strange behaviour of particles could be the result that substantiates the presence of a mysterious fifth force of nature. Scientists called this new force 'photophobic' as the particles (X17) behaved in such a way that it was afraid of the light.

Explains the mystery of dark matter

"This feature is similar to the anomaly observed in 8Be and seems to be in agreement with the X17 boson decay scenario. We are expecting more, independent experimental results to come for the X17 particle in the coming years," wrote the researchers in the study report.

Researchers believe that the discovery of this fifth force of nature could help to explain the mystery of dark matter which is thought to have made up 85 per cent of the universe. It could also pave way for a new unified fifth force theory, that binds up all the known four forces together.

A few months back, another study conducted by a team of researchers at the Imperial College of London had ruled out the possibility of a fifth force. The research failed to find any presence of fifth force, and this finding suggested that physicists can rule out a whole class of models of dark energy as a fifth force, and can look for other possible alternatives.