Category: Higgs Boson

Higgs Boson “god Particle” Update

In recent news for CERN, the world’s largest nuclear and particle physics laboratory. They have now signed India to become an associate member of the European organization. India had “observer” status until September last year, when the CERN council adopted a resolution increasing its position. In the past few years, Indian scientists have been involved in several experiments at CERN. India made contributions to the construction of the Large Hadron Collider. Indian scientists also played a significant role in the Compact Muon Boson experiments, which is one of the two experiments that triggered the discovery of the Higgs Boson.

The discovery of the Higgs Boson in 2012 at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN showed the world a new way in understanding the universe. By 2016, the LHC produced about the same number of collisions it did in all its previous years combined. At its current rate, it produces about a Higgs a second. US scientists, with international partners are trying to develop upgrades for a high-luminosity LHC, that would provide 10 times the collisions. This would launch a new area of physics, it would start an era of high-precision Higgs Boson physics. Their progress this year has been outstanding. They have created a successful prototype, this could lead to the strongest accelerator magnet ever created.

Currently, theoreticians aren’t truly necessary in this new category of physics. With the discovery of the Higgs, there’s been a change. Instead of creating new theories, experiments are looking for more evidence to support already exposed theories. Whenever something new is found, theorists try to explain and make sense of it. Michelangelo Mangano, a theoretical physicist who works within experimental physics says, “It’s like when you go mushroom hunting. You spend all of you time looking and at the end of the day you may find nothing. Here it’s the same, there’s a lot of wasted energy but it doesn’t lead to much. But occasionally you can find a little gold nugget, a perfect mushroom.” After the discovery of the Higgs we thought we knew all the Standard Model, but “many physicists were optimistic about finding new anomalies.”(Harriet Jarlett, CERN).

Higgs and Englert Receive Nobel Prize for god Particle

I have been hearing over the last few weeks that they may or may not receive the Nobel Prize for physics this year.  It became official that Peter Higgs Francois Englert received the prize earlier today.  There was some contention that they may not win this year, but in a couple years when the god particle discovery made last year was more firm and the implications were better known.  My guess is that because of the age of Peter Higgs (84 years old) that there was some pressure to grant the prize sooner rather than later.

The amazing fact is that the Higgs and Englert made the conjecture about the god particle 50 years ago.  Back then, they were criticized for a “way out there idea” that could “never be proven true or false in our lifetimes”.  We see many of the same reactions about physics theories today that seem crazy (this means you:  string theory, many parts of Quantum mechanics, negative energy, one-electron universe, etc.), but may be proven true within the next 50 years by experiment.

There is still much to learn about the god particle and the discovery has led to many more questions about how many different god particles exist and the impact on helping to figure out what dark energy and dark matter is.  I have recently talked to two theoretical physicists who have already used the new knowledge of the god particle energies to extrapolate that some particles we believed had zero mass, may actually have mass, which goes a long way in answering the dark matter and energy questions.


This is a great day for science and the world! After 50 years of searching, thanks to the largest and most complex machine ever built (the LHC) and the dated and de-commissioned Tevatron collider at Fermilab (where I have visited many times), we are 99.9% sure the god particle has been found.  However, there is still a lot to learn about the particle from analyzing previous collision data and from more LHC collisions scheduled later this year.  Some caution is needed as there is a remote chance that this is a new unexpected particle and not the god particle.
The mass region around 126GeV is the magic number.  This is not very far away from recent predictions.  A full detailed report will be released at the end of July.  I would expect that in early July of 2013 we will have a full confirmation announced with many more details provided about the particle’s characteristics.  As in most scientific discoveries, a major discovery only leads to more unanswered questions and this will be the case with the god particle.

We will cover what this finding means to mass and gravity and what we still need to find out in an upcoming post….