The Higgs boson or Higgs particle is an elementary particle whose possible discovery was announced on July 4, 2012, and its existence was tentatively confirmed on March 2013. It was predicted by a theory in physics called the Standard Model. It is one of the 17 fundamental particles in the Standard Model. The other 16 are the 6 quarks, 6 leptons, the photon, gluon, W, and Z bosons. The quarks and leptons are examples of a class of particles called fermions. They are the ones that make up all the everyday matter we see around us. The photon, W, Z, gluon, and Higgs particles are in a different class called bosons. They are the ones responsible for all the forces in nature except gravity. Scientists don't yet know how to combine gravity with the Standard Model. Finding the Higgs boson could help us in finding answers like these.
The Higgs boson is hard to produce with current equipment, making it difficult to detect. The Large Hadron Collider at CERN is the equipment scientists are now using to discover its existence. These particles are believed to exist for less than a septillionth of a second. The collider will have so much energy that it should be able to make Higgs bosons. Because the Higgs boson has so much mass, it takes a lot of energy to create one.
Higgs bosons obey the conservation of energy law, which states that no energy is created or destroyed, but instead it is transferred. First, the energy starts out in the gauge boson that interacts with the Higgs field. This energy is in the form of kinetic energy as movement. After the gauge boson interacts with the Higgs field, it is slowed down. This slowing reduces the amount of kinetic energy in the gauge boson. However, this energy is not destroyed. Instead, the energy is converted into mass-energy, which is normal mass that comes from energy. The mass created is what we call a Higgs boson. The amount of mass created comes from Einstein's famous equation E=mc2, which states that mass is equal to a large amount of energy (i.e. 1 kg of mass is equivalent to almost 90 quadrillion joules of energy—the same amount of energy used by the entire world in roughly an hour and a quarter in 2008). Since the amount of mass-energy created by the Higgs field is equal to the amount of kinetic-energy that the gauge boson lost by being slowed, energy is conserved.
Higgs bosons are used in a variety of science fiction stories. Noting the elusive search for the Higgs boson, the term "God particle" was coined by Nobel Laureate Leon Lederman, Director Emeritus of Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. However, the scientific community generally disapproves of this nickname. The existence of this particle neither supports nor doesn't support the existence of a god.
Possible claims [change]
On the 12 December 2011, the two teams at the Large Hadron Collider looking for the Higgs Boson, ATLAS and the CMS, announced that they had seen in the data spikes which could represent the Higgs Boson particle; however, it is possible that this was just an error.
On 4 July 2012, the teams at the Large Hadron Collider declared that they had discovered a particle which they think is the Higgs boson.
- Though only 1% of the mass of composite particles, such as the proton and neutron, is due to the Higgs mechanism.
- Rincon, Paul (13 December 2011). "LHC: Higgs Boson 'may have been glimpsed". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-16158374. Retrieved 13 December 2011.
- BBC News - Higgs boson-like particle discovery claimed at LHC - Retrieved 4 July 2012
Other websites [change]
- The Official Website of ATLAS Project, a leading Higgs Boson research project: atlas.ch
|Particles in Physics|
|Elementary:||Fermions:||Quarks: up – down – strange – charm – bottom – top
Leptons: electron – muon – tau – neutrinos
|Bosons:||Gauge bosons: photon – W and Z bosons – gluons|
|Composite:||Hadrons:||Baryons: proton – neutron – hyperon|
|Mesons: pion – kaon – J/ψ|
|Atomic nuclei – Atoms – Molecules|
|Hypothetical:||Higgs boson – Graviton – Tachyon|