There is palpable tension at CERN for sure people might not sleep till Tuesday, the 13th. The premier particle physics laboratory is all set to hold a special seminar that day, possibly to announce latest in the search for the Higgs boson. The search is nearing an end and this is expected to be a landmark announcement, possibly one that can either confirm or rule out the Higgs boson.
The 13th December joint announcement might be the last one on the Higgs. We are hoping for either a confirmation or nullification.
A 125-126 GeV peak for the Higgs? Tantalizing: http://techie-buzz.com/science/higgs-discovery-rumours.html
We had covered a seminar given jointly by the ATLAS and CMS collaborations last month here and we had told you that the search was nearing an end.
The latest news yet!
The mass ranges for finding the Higgs has been narrowed down to just 30 GeV between 114 to 144 GeV, as per the simplest version of the Standard Model. The finding of the Higgs boson is a crucial step, as it would be the final confirmation of the tremendous success of the Standard Model.
The Standard Model
The Standard Model of particle physics is a framework based on very fundamental principles of physics. It describes the interaction between different particles and the three forces electromagnetism, weak and strong. Although there are a number of freely adjustable parameters, the Standard Model has been the most successful theory of physics ever. The progress of physics in this direction has been extremely rapid, especially in the 1950’s to the 1990’s. Each of the particles predicted by the Standard Model has been detected, giving both theorists and experimentalists enormous confidence that this is the correct model. Theory has always been immediately confirmed by experiments, and they have invariably confirmed the Standard Model predictions! All that remains is finding the Higgs and this one last piece is playing hard-to-get.
Many physicists are tensed about the prospect of there being no Higgs! Many others, among them notably Nobel Prize winner Steven Weinberg, feels that it would be exciting if the Standard Model Higgs is not found! There are many alternative models and these would then gain center stage.
All in all, it is safe to say that this one announcement may be the fork in the path for physics going forward. Higgs or no Higgs – that is the question. The answer comes on the 13th!