Scientists may announce discovery of Higgs Boson

Dunya News

Scientists to unveil findings regarding the Big Bang that gave rise to stars.

Scientists hunting the elusivesubatomic Higgs particle will unveil findings on Wednesdaythat take them nearer to understanding how the Big Bang at thedawn of time gave rise to stars, planets and even life.Physicists who have been smashing particles together at nearlight-speed at the CERN laboratory near Geneva have already seentantalising glimpses of the Higgs boson, the missing piece ofthe fundamental theory of physics known as the Standard Model.The world of science now awaits a mass of evidence bigenough to be deemed a formal discovery. The secrecy surroundingWednesdays announcement has fuelled speculation that nearly 40years of research have reached a climax.CERN accidentally released a video on its website brieflyovernight announcing a new particle had been observed, butCERN representatives declined to comment on whether that waswhat would be announced later in the day.This video was released due to a technical glitch on ourside here at CERN. The final results have not yet beenreleased, CERN press officer Renilde Vanden Broeck said inMelbourne.She said the organisation had prepared several videos for arange of outcomes for Wednesdays announcement.A CERN physicist who knows what will be announced said thediscovery was not necessarily definitive.This is not a black and white answer which you shouldexpect. This is an important stepping stone, Peter Jenni,former spokesman for the ATLAS collaboration, one part of theCERN research organisation, told Reuters on Wednesday.Data harvested from CERNs Large Hadron Collider, thebiggest particle accelerator in the world, could also shed lighton the make-up of the poorly understood dark matter and darkenergy that make up 96 percent of the universe. It may evenpoint the way to research into the possibility of paralleluniverses.CERN is planning to beam the announcement live around theworld to a physics conference in Melbourne, Australia.Relatedevents are planned in countries involved in the project,including Britain. The unusual level of stage management hasfuelled the sense that big news is in store.On Monday, U.S. physicists said they had found the strongestevidence yet of the existence of the Higgs in a mass of datacollected from the now-mothballed Tevatron particle accelerator,run by the Fermi National Accelerator Laboutside Chicago.It will be interesting to see how it lines up with CERNsresults on Wednesday, said CERN spokesman James Gillies.Some scientists working on the project have told Reutersthey expect the unveiling of a formal discovery while othersexpect it to fall just short.With thousands of physicists involved, divided into twoseparate teams called Atlas and CMS, CERN insists the fullpicture will not be clear to anyone until a seminar shortlybefore Wednesdays announcement.Even CERNs director general wont know much before theseminar reveals the exact results, said Pauline Gagnon, aCanadian particle physicist working on Atlas. They are beingfinalised at the last minute after much scrutiny.The Higgs particle, although crucial for understanding howthe universe was formed, remains theoretical. It is the lastundiscovered piece of the Standard Model that describes thefundamental make-up of the universe. The model is for physicistswhat the theory of evolution is for biologists.Scientists say the existence of dark matter and dark energysuggests the Standard Model, if validated by a Higgs discovery,is just the first layer of a more complex theory that includesthe vast bulk of the universe that is now poorly understood.The Standard Model has a few major flaws; the Higgs bosondiscovery would only fix one of them, said Gagnon.We still have no clue regarding what makes 96 percent ofthe content of the universe. This should keep us physicists busyfor a few more decades.