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Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Higgs Boson

The Higgs Boson In light of the exciting and amazing and awesome news coming out of CERN, I thought I’d post some highlights from an article from Reuters concerning confirmation of the long sought after Higgs Boson. And it only cost about $10 billion dollars!

(Reuters) - Scientists at Europe's CERN research center have found a new subatomic particle, a basic building block of the universe, which appears to be the boson imagined and named half a century ago by theoretical physicist Peter Higgs.

The discovery of the particle is likely to shed light on other mysteries of our universe. Scientists see confirmation of this theory as accelerating investigations into the still unexplained "dark matter" they believe pervades the universe and into the possibility of a fourth or more dimensions, or of parallel universes (now we're talking my language!). It may help in resolving contradictions between their model of how the world works at the subatomic level and Einstein's theory of gravity.

CERN's Large Hadron Collider is the world's biggest and most powerful particle accelerator. Two beams of protons are fired in opposite directions around the 27-km (17-mile) looped pipe built under the Swiss-French border before smashing into each other. The collisions, which mimic the moments just after the Big Bang, throw off debris signals picked up by a vast complex of detectors and the data is examined by banks of computers.
Large Hadron Collider (see the man standing in the center?)

The Higgs theory explains how particles clumped together to form stars, planets and life itself. Without the Higgs boson, the universe would have remained a formless soup of particles shooting around at the speed of light, the theory goes.

We will certainly get into the conversation of God and science in future posts!

It is the last undiscovered piece of the Standard Model that describes the fundamental make-up of the universe. The model is for physicists what the theory of evolution is for biologists.

What scientists do not yet know from the latest findings is whether the particle they have discovered is the Higgs boson as exactly described by the Standard Model. It could be a variant of the Higgs idea or an entirely new subatomic particle that could force a rethink on the fundamental structure of matter. The last two possibilities are, in scientific terms, even more exciting.

We do live in exciting times and I’ll have more to post on this matter in the days and weeks to come. Stephen Tremp is author of the Breakthrough trilogy. You can visit him at Breakthrough Blogs.


loverofwords said...

And I have read that it is called the "God Particle."

Andrew Leon said...

I'm not holding my breath on this. They've discovered a new particle, and that's all they know. They're jumping the gun by more than a little to announce it's the Higgs, especially when they've made that announcement in the past.

@laoverofwords: It was actually called the "goddamn particle," but the physicist that wrote the book about the search didn't think that would go over very well, so he changed it to "The God Particle."

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You didn't think God would make it easy for us to figure out, did you?

JoJo said...

I want to understand all of this...I think I'll wait for Sheldon to explain it on Big Bang Theory next season.

Jenny said...

because existing just isnt enough! *nods* yep, more money wasted on crap that could be used elsewhere.

Arlee Bird said...

This is very topical--heard more about it in the news just today. Maybe the revelers in my neighborhood will unleash the particle with all their fireworks tonight. Big bang!

Tossing It Out

Anonymous said...

loverofwords, that's probably not a very accurate name, but somehow it stuck and is widely used.

Andrew, I think of the story last year when scientists thought they found particles traveling faster than the speed of light. There was a big hoopla that was short-lived as they soon found an error in their math.

Alex, one question answered while a hundred more are opened up.

JoJo, good one!

Jenny, a lot of people share your thoughts.

Arlee, that would be very cool. Or very dangerous.

Andrew Leon said...

Yeah, that one had everyone all excited for about 3 minutes.

Tina said...

Our family is quite obsessed with that Hadron Collider...with The Engineer and all. This sounds really cool. As to Sheldon, yes, I can't wait either. He's my husband, er, like my husband. Only mine is an engineer and OCD and does possess a FEW social skills...bless his heart.
Tina @ Life is Good
Post A-Z Road trip!

Tina said...

I meant NOT OCD...though ADD...


There was a progrtamme onTV about this, though I don't know much about these things found it extrenely interesting.


Jo said...

I would like more information about this, short of doing all the research, I really don't quite understand what this is all about.

Anonymous said...

One of the main controversies is that the money used (around $10 billion) could be used for other things to help humanity as there are a lot of needs in the world today.

Personally, I think we need to delve deeper into the mysteries of life, our universe, and our place in it. It comes down to who holds the knowledge and power. If it's freely shared then we are in good shape. Id it's hoarded, then we are all in trouble.

Jo said...

For those of your readers who are a tad confused about all this, I just saw a video which helped me a bit. I now understand some of what is being talked about.

loverofwords said...

Interesting comments. I am still trying to understand the String Theory---Stephen can you help?

E. M. Prokop said...

This is so interesting..I think it's important to explore the mysteries of our world...yes there are a lot of needs on our planet today, but exploring the universe and helping the poor are two different issues..even if they decided not to delve into this, the money would not go to help the poor because that's not what CERN does...It will be really interesting to see what becomes of this! @goddamn particle!

Lynn Proctor said...

i just skimmed this the other day, when a pastor friend shared it on fb--gotta read it a couple more times!