God Particle hidden at lower mass, say physicists

March 14th, 2009 - 1:16 pm ICT by ANI  

Large Hadron Collider

London, March 14 (ANI): New findings have suggested that the Higgs boson, or the God Particle, is not a relatively high-mass particle, and physicists looking for it would have to search for a lower mass particle.

The findings have come from Tevatron particle accelerator at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Illinois.

The results are based on all data collected since 2001 by DZero and its sister experiment, the Collider Detector at Fermilab (CDF), which study the debris from proton-antiproton collisions.

They suggest that the Higgs boson is not a relatively high-mass particle, and physicists must keep looking for evidence of the Higgs boson in the lower-mass debris that sprays from particle collisions inside the Tevatron.

This means that scientists at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, Europes particle-physics laboratory near Geneva, Switzerland, wont have a quick route to success.

The LHC was designed to collide particles with five times the energy of the Tevatron, and would have excelled at hunting for a high-mass Higgs particle.

If the Higgs existed at one of those high masses, then they could have anticipated discovering it very quickly, said Darien Wood, a particle physicist at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, and spokesman for DZero, one of the two main Tevatron experiments.

The Tevatron results specify that the Higgs boson is very unlikely to have an energy between 160 and 170 gigaelectronvolts (GeV). Gigaelectronvolts are a measure of a particles energy that is proportional to its mass.

Experimentalists have been working on the assumption that the Higgs boson lies somewhere between 114 and 185 GeV.

The lower-energy boundary was established by the Large Electron-Positron (LEP) collider at CERN in the 1990s, whereas the upper boundary is a softer limit established by indirect evidence, such as the masses of the top quark and the W boson.

The latest results, and other evidence, suggest that the Higgs boson is hiding at the lower end of this energy scale.

But at lower energies, the job of filtering out other debris and finding a rare Higgs event becomes more difficult.

Even if the Tevatron runs through 2011, it would only have about a 30 percent chance of finding evidence for a low-mass Higgs, according to Fermilab. (ANI)

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