Epic `God particle` discovery now ‘closer than ever’

Holy Grail of high-energy physics — the predicted but elusive Higgs boson — is almost within reach, according to CERN Physicists.

CERN, the international agency in Geneva that oversees experiments in the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), announced Monday in a progress report the news of mounting experimental evidence for the existence of this critically important speck of nature.

Computer simulated image of a cutaway section of the ATLAS detector at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) depicts a Higgs particle as it decays.

And the Brandeis high-energy physics group, along with other particle physicists around the world collaborating on making the finding, is almost giddy with excitement.

The Brandeis group has contributed since 1994 to collaborative experiments to detect the Higgs particle in the world’s largest particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).

“It’s very exciting,” said Brandeis physics Professor Craig Blocker, explaining that experiments in the LHC’s two detectors have amassed enough evidence of the Higgs particle to suggest much more than an unexplained blip in the data produced by trillions of protons smashing into each other at almost the speed of light.

“The data look very tantalizing but we’re not there yet,” noted Blocker.

“We don’t have quite enough evidence to claim a discovery but it looks promising — there’s a good indication that this particle is there, so we’ll probably be able to announce the discovery next year with more data,” he added.

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