Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The God Particle

Scientists at CERN have announced their most recent results in the search for the Higgs boson (God particle). The Higgs particle, first hypothesized in the 1960s by physicist Peter Higgs and others, would help explain why elementary particles, such as quarks, have mass. Finding the Higgs—or ruling out its existence—was the prime motivation for building the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), where researchers collide protons traveling at nearly light-speed to create new particles.

John Ellis, theoretical physicist, in the video below answers the question "Are we close to discovering the Higgs Boson and why is it so difficult to find it?" in preparation of the Press Conference following the scientific seminar announcing results of the searches for the Higgs boson on July 4 2012.

A VIDEO from Europe's CERN physics lab, apparently posted mistakenly on the eve of an announcement on the elusive "God Particle," reveals that a new subatomic particle has been observed in the relevant range. The leaked video was relocated to a password-protected part of the CERN Web site.


The video above was accidentally published on the CERN website and appears to have leaked the long-awaited discovery of the Higgs boson that was officially announced on the fourth of July. According to the Telegraph, Cern say that this is one of several videos they have made, one for each of the possible outcomes, as though it's a presidential election and they've written one speech for victory and one for defeat.

I will update this post as more facts com in...

“We have reached a milestone in our understanding of nature,” said CERN Director General Rolf Heuer. “The discovery of a particle consistent with the Higgs boson opens the way to more detailed studies, requiring larger statistics, which will pin down the new particle’s properties, and is likely to shed light on other mysteries of our universe.”

Soundbytes from the interviews of Peter Higgs, Francois Englert, Carl Hagen and Gerald Guralnik, recorded at CERN on the announcement of the latest results from ATLAS and CMS on the Higgs boson searches.

“We observe in our data clear signs of a new particle, at the level of 5 sigma, in the mass region around 126 GeV. The outstanding performance of the LHC and ATLAS and the huge efforts of many people have brought us to this exciting stage,” said ATLAS experiment spokesperson Fabiola Gianotti, “but a little more time is needed to prepare these results for publication.”

"The results are preliminary but the 5 sigma signal at around 125 GeV we’re seeing is dramatic. This is indeed a new particle. We know it must be a boson and it’s the heaviest boson ever found,” said CMS experiment spokesperson Joe Incandela. “The implications are very significant and it is precisely for this reason that we must be extremely diligent in all of our studies and cross-checks."

“It’s hard not to get excited by these results,” said CERN Research Director Sergio Bertolucci. “ We stated last year that in 2012 we would either find a new Higgs-like particle or exclude the existence of the Standard Model Higgs. With all the necessary caution, it looks to me that we are at a branching point: the observation of this new particle indicates the path for the future towards a more detailed understanding of what we’re seeing in the data.”