This video is called What is the Higgs boson?
Jul 4, 2012 – 11:00
Cern detects new “Higgs-like” particle
Scientists at the Cern research centre on the Swiss-French border have discovered a new particle that could be the elusive Higgs Boson – crucial in understanding how the Big Bang gave rise to stars, planets and even life.
“We have a discovery. We have observed a new particle consistent with the Higgs Boson – which one? That remains open,” Cern Director General Rolf Heuer told a seminar at the European Organization for Nuclear Research in Geneva on Wednesday.
“This is indeed a new particle. We know it must be a boson and it’s the heaviest boson ever found. This is a preliminary result, but we think it’s very strong and very solid,” said Joe Incandela, spokesman for one of the two Cern teams hunting for the Higgs.
Physicists have been smashing particles together at near light-speed in the underground Large Hadron Collider (LHC) – the world’s most powerful particle accelerator – near Geneva since 2010, creating high-energy collisions of protons to investigate dark matter, antimatter and the creation of the universe, which many theorise occurred in a massive explosion known as the Big Bang.
Amongst the huge amount of data produced by the LHC experiments, researchers have already seen tantalising glimpses of the Higgs Boson, the so-called “God particle” – believed to be the missing piece of the fundamental theory of physics known as the Standard Model – which were reported by Cern in December 2011.
For particle physicists, finding the elusive Higgs Boson is key to confirming the Standard Model that explains what gives mass to matter and by extension how the universe was formed.
Without the Higgs particle, the particles that make up the universe would have remained like a soup, the theory goes.
It is unclear from the latest findings whether the particle they have discovered is the Higgs as described by the Standard Model, a variant of the Higgs or an entirely new subatomic particle that could force a rethink on the fundamental structure of matter.
Heuer described today’s findings as a “milestone in our understanding of nature”.
“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,” he added.
Two independent Higgs discoveries combined into one (as yet unofficial) super-discovery: here.
Alice Livingstone Boomla explains why we should care about the discovery of the Higgs boson: here.