Higgs boson update: Expect an answer by December

“If it exists, it has to be there. And if it’s not there, it will be known to be science fiction by December." — Vivek Sharma, a physics professor at UC San Diego, talking about the as-yet elusive Higgs boson particle. The search for the Higgs boson has recently been narrowed down. Basically, we've gone from looking for a needle in a haystack, to looking for a needle inside a small, hay-stuffed pillow.


  1. Just because you can not see it does not mean it is not there.  Think of science before the microscope.  Inversely just because you think it might be there does not mean it is there just because you wish it to be.  Think of the Easter bunny.

      1.  For a moment, I read that was “Platypus Of The Day” award and my mind started veering off in a very weird direction.

        I haven’t had my morning cup of coffee yet.

  2. We know that observing particles at certain energies is a predictable, repeatable process.  If they have this collider scaled properly, I think he’s right.  This particle will appear in short order.

  3. But what are the implications if it’s not there?  What theoretical model can account for its absence?  Will it lend some weight, no pun intended, to the reality-as-hologram theory?

    1. >But what are the implications if it’s not there?

      To paraphrase Brian Cox: Then the universe is stranger and more amazing than we’ve yet to imagine.

      Also it means physicists have been barking up the wrong tree for 90 years. This is how science works and 90 years is a comparatively short detour. If we don’t find it then a lot of physicists will be scratching their heads, string theory is the best idea that we’ve got and a missing higgs particle may mean that a lot of things are wrong.

      While it wont lend weight to the holographic universe theory (just because A is wrong doesn’t make B correct) it may give it more eyes as a lot of dejected physicists will be looking for something else to work on.

      I hope we don’t find it.

  4. uhm, the article states december -next- year, folks…
    “Nonetheless, LHC researchers still believe they will either have found the Higgs by the end of next year or confirmed that it does not exist in the form…”
    “Discoveries are almost assured within the next 12 months. If the Higgs exists, the LHC experiments will soon find it. If it does not, its absence will point the way to new physics.”

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