So this morning there are many mutterings about tomorrows Intended press release by CERN regarding research at the LHC. Similar lectures in the last 10 years headed up by Fabiola Gianotti and her team have pointed to an “excess of events” at certain mass values (~115GeV) which could indicate a fingerprint of the crucial Higgs Boson, a particle allowing mass, gravity and matter as we know it to exist.
In a range of experiments which have continued since this, regions have been identified where the Search for the Higg’s Boson can be excluded ( 149-206GeV) so we can focus down and identify the mass and nature of this elusive particle. One thing I find fascinating about this research is how it shows the narrative of science so fully.
The simple fact that the mass of this particle is illustrated using an energy is fascinating it shows the direct reliance of modern Physics on Einstein’s relativity as E=mc^2. Even though 115GeV may seem like a huge number this corresponds to a mass of 0.0000000000012863390789812 Grams a minuscule amount. When you think about the billions of euros dedicated to such a small thing- the years of research and engineering challenges encountered in putting a 27km tube under the Swiss Alps with micron-precision. It is testament to the People who have worked on it in the continued search for fundamental knowledge.
This is the biggest academic project ever undertaken- It has involved scientists the world over, and shows what can be achieved when we collaborate on such a large-scale. For the statement this project sends out I think it will be similar to the space landings- but without cold war connotations.
I have also taken the liberty of finding out the odds of CERN confirming the mass window of the Higgs boson at my bookies ! Anyway tomorrow may be an excellent day for physics we will just have to wait and see !