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  • Writer's pictureLucian@going2paris.net

Higgs Boson


Mister Higgs died recently. In reading his obituary, I was reminded of the brilliance of the physicists who study particle physics. Higgs had an idea of what gives particles their mass and waited nearly 50 years for physical proof of his idea. Blows my mind.


The Higgs boson is the fundamental particle associated with the Higgs field, a field that gives mass to other fundamental particles such as electrons and quarks. A particle’s mass determines how much it resists changing its speed or position when it encounters a force. Not all fundamental particles have mass. The photon, which is the particle of light and carries the electromagnetic force, has no mass at all.


The Higgs boson was proposed in 1964 by Peter Higgs, François Englert, and four other theorists to explain why certain particles have mass. Scientists confirmed its existence in 2012 through the ATLAS and CMS experiments at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN in Switzerland. This discovery led to the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics being awarded to Higgs and Englert.


Scientists are now studying the characteristic properties of the Higgs boson to determine if it precisely matches the predictions of the Standard Model of particle physics. If the Higgs boson deviates from the model, it may provide clues to new particles that only interact with other Standard Model particles through the Higgs boson and thereby lead to new scientific discoveries.

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