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Higgs Boson

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Last updated date: 24th Jul 2024
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Introduction to Higgs Boson

Classical theories always found to be in good agreement with massive objects, such as the galaxies, planets, etc. but the classical mechanics or the classical theories always failed to explain how the atom works, in fact, according to classical theories atoms do not exist! In the early 20th centuries, physicists realised that they needed a completely new theory to account for atomic particles and it is known as quantum theory. The version that sums up the current knowledge of elementary particles and forces is known as the standard model. It has the leptons (the components of the matter), force particles (such as the gluon, photon, W and Z), and the Higgs Boson which is most essential and required to explain part of the masses of the other particles.

The Higgs Boson, which is also familiarly known as the god particle is one of the new age discoveries and top elementary particles available in nature. According to the standard model, the elementary particles are classified as Bosons and fermions and the Higgs Boson or the God particle belongs to Bosons. Let us have a detailed explanation and information about the Boson particle and the Higgs Boson.

Boson Particle

The fundamental particles or elementary particles are mainly classified into two types, fermions and Bosons. Fermions are the elementary particles that are designated with the odd half-integral spin and they are further classified into leptons and hadrons. Bosons are the integral spin particles and they do not obey Pauli’s exclusion principle. The fundamental particles that have an integral spin and obeys the Bose-Einstein distribution are known as the Bosons or Boson particles.  

Higgs Boson Particle

The standard model of fundamental particles describes the fundamental forces (except gravitation force), the particles which transmit those forces and three generations of the particles. We know that the fundamental particles are massless or of negligible mass, but that does not mean they are completely massless. 

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Then the question that arose was, why do elementary particles have masses? This question was answered by Higgs Boson. Higgs Boson explained why elementary particles have mass and this explanation is familiarly known as the Higgs Boson theory.  The Higgs Boson particle is an elementary particle predicted by the standard model and its existence was proved in 1912 by ATLAS and CMS. 

In 1964, one of the British physicists Peter Higgs was working on the particles at Edinburgh University, he predicted that in addition to the particles the scientists already knew, there must be another one. The new particle would give mass to the particles, and make sense of all the theories about them. Scientists looked for this new particle and named it the Higgs Boson or the Higgs particle for years. In 2012, LHC physicists noticed an interesting signal that brought a wave of curiosity and they thought this signal might be the missing particle. It was confirmed as the Higgs Boson particle in 2013.

What is Higgs Boson? 

According to the Higgs Boson meaning, the Higgs Boson is that elementary half-integral particle related to the Higgs field, a field that provides mass to other fundamental particles like electrons and quarks. A particle’s mass determines what proportion it resists changing its speed or position when it encounters a force. Not all elementary particles have mass. For example, the photon, which is the particle of light and carries the electromagnetic force, has no mass at all.

The Higgs Boson particle is connected with a weak force. We know that electromagnetism describes particles interacting with photons, the basic units of the electromagnetic field. In an alternative way, the modern theory of weak interactions describes force particles (the W and Z particles) interacting with electrons, neutrinos, quarks and other particles. In many aspects, these force particles are almost similar to photons. But they are also strikingly different at the same time. 

The photon probably has no mass (i.e., massless or negligible mass) at all. From experiments, we know that a photon can not be more massive than the thousand-billion-billion-billionth (10⁻³⁰) mass of an electron, and for theoretical reasons and assumptions, we believe it has exactly zero mass. The W and Z force particles, however, have enormous masses, around more than 80 times the mass of a proton, one of the constituents of an atomic nucleus. 

Scientists are now studying and analyzing the Higgs Boson properties to determine if it precisely matches the predictions of the Standard Model of particle physics. If the Higgs Boson deviates from the model, it is going to provide clues to new particles that only interact with other Standard Model particles through the Higgs Boson and thereby lead to new scientific discoveries.

Did You Know?

Peter Higgs’ best-known paper on the new particle was initially rejected. But this was a blessing in disguise since it led Peter Higgs to feature an entire paragraph introducing the now-famous Higgs Boson particle. In 1964, Peter Higgs wrote two papers, each just two pages long, on what is now referred to as the Higgs field. The journal Physics Letters accepted and approved the first but sent the second back. Yoichiro Nambu, a highly regarded physicist who had reviewed the second paper, insisted Peter Higgs add a section explaining his theories' physical implications. Higgs added a paragraph predicting that an excitation of the field, like a wave in the ocean, would yield a new particle. He then submitted the revised paper to the competing journal Physical Review Letters, which published it and now one of the important discoveries.

FAQs on Higgs Boson

1. What is Higgs Boson in Simple Terms?

Ans: In simple terms, the Higgs Boson is the elementary particle related to the Higgs field, a field that provides mass to other fundamental particles like electrons and quarks. A particle’s mass determines what proportion it resists changing its speed or position when it encounters a force.

2. What Does Higgs Boson do?

Ans: Higgs Boson gives the mass to the elementary particles. The Higgs Boson is also an elementary particle and it is known as the god particle.