Subcomponent Models for Quarks and Leptons: Difficulties and Perspectives
When learning that I am working on subcomponents of quarks and leptons, my friends usually ask me for my possible motivations in spending my time in such intriguing business. Frankly I reply that the best answer I can give is that my motivations are mostly personal. When you are at a certain age, with all the various burdens etc, you can only devote the little time you are left with for research, either to a less competitive subject, such as for instance history of physics, or to something exotic such as subcomponents. But there are still other reasons, more closely related to the present developments in particle theory. For instance, there is the proliferation of quarks and leptons. Also, as it has become customary to discuss what may happen up to 101 6 GeV or even to 101 9GeV, one cannot avoid the thought that, rigorously, leptons are known to be pointlike only up to 10-1 6÷lO-1 7cm, or in energy, up to say, 1TeV. There are still many, many orders of magnitudes up to the Planck mass, so one asks why one excludes a priori that there may be many more levels of substructure, or at least one more. Other reasons have to do with unification with gravity if it ever will be done. Maybe such unification with gravity if it ever will be done in terms of our quarks and leptons but rather in terms of other more elementary objects.
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