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Question for the physics nerds

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CalliArcale

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<p>I've been reading that the new detector out at CERN is going to try and produce a Higgs Boson.&nbsp; Can you explain to me what a Higgs Boson actually is, and why physicists are looking to it for answers about how the Big Bang occured?&nbsp; I'm pretty hazy on it.&nbsp; I know it's supposed to be a big particle, and very exotic, prone to disintegrated immediately (so it gets detected mostly by seeing it fall apart).</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>And how is it they'll know they've found a Higgs boson, if they can't detect it directly but instead must detect the bits left over after it decays?&nbsp; How can they be sure that what they detect really is the remains of a Higgs boson?</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p><font color="#666699"><em>"People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly . . . timey wimey . . . stuff."</em>  -- The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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majornature

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>I've been reading that the new detector out at CERN is going to try and produce a Higgs Boson.&nbsp; Can you explain to me what a Higgs Boson actually is, and why physicists are looking to it for answers about how the Big Bang occured?&nbsp; I'm pretty hazy on it.&nbsp; I know it's supposed to be a big particle, and very exotic, prone to disintegrated immediately (so it gets detected mostly by seeing it fall apart).&nbsp;And how is it they'll know they've found a Higgs boson, if they can't detect it directly but instead must detect the bits left over after it decays?&nbsp; How can they be sure that what they detect really is the remains of a Higgs boson? <br />Posted by CalliArcale</DIV></p><p>YOU KNOW, I'M LEARNING ABOUT THAT MYSELF.&nbsp; I THINK THEY'LL KNOW IF THE FOUND THE HIGGS BOSON PARTICLE.&nbsp; IT'S SUPPOSE SOLVE THE MYSTERY ON THE MASS IN THE UNIVERSE.&nbsp;&nbsp;IN OTHER WORDS, THIS PARTICLES SHOULD DETERMIN THE MASS OS REVEAL THE PROPERTIES OF MASS.&nbsp; IT'S STILL UP FOR GRABS...&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>THEY HAVE A COOL PICTURE OF THE CERN ON "APOD"<br /></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="2" color="#14ea50"><strong><font size="1">We are born.  We live.  We experiment.  We rot.  We die.  and the whole process starts all over again!  Imagine That!</font><br /><br /><br /><img id="6e5c6b4c-0657-47dd-9476-1fbb47938264" style="width:176px;height:247px" src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/14/4/6e5c6b4c-0657-47dd-9476-1fbb47938264.Large.jpg" alt="blog post photo" width="276" height="440" /><br /></strong></font> </div>
 
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a_lost_packet_

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<p>I guess the best explanation should come straight from CERN itself:</p><p>http://askanexpert.web.cern.ch/AskAnExpert/en/PPhysics/Blocks-en.html#7&nbsp;</p><p align="left">"The Standard Model - the theory that encompasses our current understanding of Nature - does not explain the origin of mass, nor why some particles are very heavy while others have no mass at all; it does not explain why there are so many different types of matter particles in the Universe. The answer may be the so-called Higgs mechanism. The Higgs field has at least one new particle associated with it, the Higgs boson. If such a particle exists, the LHC will be able to detect it. </p> <p align="left">According to the theory of the Higgs mechanism, the whole of space is filled with a &lsquo;Higgs field&rsquo;, and by interacting with this field, particles acquire their masses. Particles interacting with this field would acquire mass. The more intense the interaction with the field the bigger the mass of the particle. The Higgs boson is expected to be discovered at the LHC.</p> <p><em>Historically, everything derived from the attempt to provide a more complete description of nature, namely the realization of a theoretical unification of the electromagnetic and the weak force. Despite being very successful in some cases, the formulation initially suffered several serious problems both mathematically and experimentally. In the formulation it had to be assumed that all particles are massless, but this in itself causes other problems. There was a need to find a new way to introduce mass of the particles in the theory. In the '60s Peter W. Higgs, Robert Brout and Fran&ccedil;ois Englert proposed a solution..." <cont'd with much content covering pertinent points></em></p><p>Of course, they said it better than I, a mere neophyte, could hope to have done.&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="1">I put on my robe and wizard hat...</font> </div>
 
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Saiph

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<p>IIRC Higgs, while he suggested the field, didn't like the idea himself.&nbsp; It smacks of Aether theory from the 1900's.&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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CalliArcale

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So the goal of finding the Higgs boson is to test the Higgs mechanism -- the theory predicts its existence, so finding it would help validate the theory.&nbsp; And the main thrust of the theory is to explain why particles have mass -- yes? <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p> </p><p><font color="#666699"><em>"People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly . . . timey wimey . . . stuff."</em>  -- The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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yevaud

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>So the goal of finding the Higgs boson is to test the Higgs mechanism -- the theory predicts its existence, so finding it would help validate the theory.&nbsp; And the main thrust of the theory is to explain why particles have mass -- yes? <br /> Posted by CalliArcale</DIV></p><p>Pretty much yes.&nbsp; Detecting the Higgs Boson (the force-mediating particle predicted) would both help us understand why mass exists, and as another confirmation that the Standard Model is correct.&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><em>Differential Diagnosis:  </em>"<strong><em>I am both amused and annoyed that you think I should be less stubborn than you are</em></strong>."<br /> </p> </div>
 
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derekmcd

Guest
<p>I read an analogy that the Higgs Field is comparable to a crowd and the particle moving through said crowd is a movie star.&nbsp; As the movie stars traverses the crowd, the people (higgs bosons) are attracted to the movie star depending on the movie star's stature and thus giving the particle mass.</p><p>One would have to assume that the Higgs field is homogenous, but what if there are slight variations?&nbsp; Could this account for anomalies as in the Pioneer anomoly?&nbsp;</p><p>Why wouldn't a photon be affected?&nbsp; What causes specific particles to attract differing amounts of Higgs bosons resulting in different masses?&nbsp; If the Higgs boson has mass... what gives it its mass?<br /> </p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <div> </div><br /><div><span style="color:#0000ff" class="Apple-style-span">"If something's hard to do, then it's not worth doing." - Homer Simpson</span></div> </div>
 
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SomersetSmile

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Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'> ... Could this account for anomalies as in the Pioneer anomoly?&nbsp;Why wouldn't a photon be affected?&nbsp; Posted by derekmcd ...</DIV><br /><br />The Pioneer anomoly supposely has to do with the lack of symmetry in the probes approach vector to the planetary body and exit.&nbsp;&nbsp; One of the probes they talked about&nbsp;approached/exited the Earth orbit&nbsp;symmetrially near the equator and they picked up little or no anomoly for that one.&nbsp;&nbsp; So it could be an effect of a rotating Higgs field. <p style="margin:0in0in10pt" class="MsoNormal">&nbsp;</p>
 
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dubephnx

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<p>Scale: 1-10; 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10!</p><p>Anchor and Braced Structures scale: 1/2, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10??</p><p>Whoa!!! What happened? Where is the missing half? </p><p>We can have some fun with this, now that a new structure design and assembly methodology has been developed!! </p><p>Structural strap-netted structure scale: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12!!&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; ?</p><p>12?? You betcha! BINARY STRUCTURAL PHYSICS!! How? With two nets instead of one!! Huh? That's right, Anchor and Braced structures are a single NET. Rigid components placed, pinned, anchored, and some of the connecting points reinforced, but all of this still results in a single net! Physical forces hit this single net, and wind their way through a SINGLE PATHED TRIBUTARY, to reach distribution ways away from the structure! (Computer binary 1-direction= 12; structural strap-netted structure binary, 2-direction=24.)</p><p>Structural strap-netted rigid component nets have TWO tributaries to wind through, then comes back together in an dual anchoraging and distributing away from the structure foundations!! Two is better than one, for structures, because impacts on the structure hit with less force on the structure, because of the two absorbing tributaries!! Why 12? Simple, in addition to completing the structure frame in all of the compression and tension resistances, the structural strap-net also acts as a separate shock absorber throughout the entire structure frame, for an aditional two functions of reducing the effects of object impacts, wind forces, and seismic forces, for a circumferential and spherical structural shock absorber that works in both directions at the same time!!&nbsp;</p>
 
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Saiph

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dubephnx: Aside from&nbsp; your post making very little sense, it's very off topic.&nbsp; If you'd care to discuss whatever that is, feel free to start a new thread. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p align="center"><font color="#c0c0c0"><br /></font></p><p align="center"><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">--------</font></em></font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">----</font></em></font><font color="#666699">SaiphMOD@gmail.com </font><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">-------------------</font></em></font></p><p><font color="#999999"><em><font size="1">"This is my Timey Wimey Detector.  Goes "bing" when there's stuff.  It also fries eggs at 30 paces, wether you want it to or not actually.  I've learned to stay away from hens: It's not pretty when they blow" -- </font></em></font><font size="1" color="#999999">The Tenth Doctor, "Blink"</font></p> </div>
 
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yevaud

Guest
<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>You betcha! BINARY STRUCTURAL PHYSICS!! How? With two nets instead of one!! Huh? That's right, Anchor and Braced structures are a single NET. Rigid components placed, pinned, anchored, and some of the connecting points reinforced, but all of this still results in a single net! Physical forces hit this single net, and wind their way through a SINGLE PATHED TRIBUTARY, to reach distribution ways away from the structure! (Computer binary 1-direction= 12; structural strap-netted structure binary, 2-direction=24.)Structural strap-netted rigid component nets have TWO tributaries to wind through, then comes back together in an dual anchoraging and distributing away from the structure foundations!! Two is better than one, for structures, because impacts on the structure hit with less force on the structure, because of the two absorbing tributaries!! Why 12? Simple, in addition to completing the structure frame in all of the compression and tension resistances, the structural strap-net also acts as a separate shock absorber throughout the entire structure frame, for an aditional two functions of reducing the effects of object impacts, wind forces, and seismic forces, for a circumferential and spherical structural shock absorber that works in both directions at the same time!!&nbsp; </p><p><em> Posted by dubephnx</em></DIV></p><p>James Joyce is deceased, and wrote nonsensical run-on sentences far better...&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><em>Differential Diagnosis:  </em>"<strong><em>I am both amused and annoyed that you think I should be less stubborn than you are</em></strong>."<br /> </p> </div>
 
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gbehrend

Guest
<p>They are trying to figure out what gives matter mass.&nbsp; They are looking for the "Ocean" that surrounds the bubbles inside.&nbsp; I think part of the problem is how hard it is to think and perceive other dimensions.&nbsp; It is simply hard to comprehend.</p><p>They are trying to find the cosmic "Goo" particle that can conceivably only be seen while under tremendous forces of energy, mass, and controlled Em with other infinite variables.</p><p>I think what is missed may be that these fields&nbsp;hold back other dimensional matter, from many other dimensions.&nbsp; In other words, black holes may have more then one opening.</p><p>This would be explained in theory as a hole in the Boson field, caused by mass in different dimensions of of the same space, "stretching" the field to the point of tearing.&nbsp;</p><p>I just don't see it showing them actual particles that are in essence neutral matter oceans.&nbsp; At best we will see the effects the "Boson" has on certain particles, such as light bending around stars, or particle ignitions across galaxy implosions, or a dyeing black hole.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>We should probably be careful punching holes into space and time...</p>
 
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derekmcd

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>They are trying to figure out what gives matter mass.&nbsp; They are looking for the "Ocean" that surrounds the bubbles inside.&nbsp; I think part of the problem is how hard it is to think and perceive other dimensions.&nbsp; It is simply hard to comprehend.They are trying to find the cosmic "Goo" particle that can conceivably only be seen while under tremendous forces of energy, mass, and controlled Em with other infinite variables.I think what is missed may be that these fields&nbsp;hold back other dimensional matter, from many other dimensions.&nbsp; In other words, black holes may have more then one opening.This would be explained in theory as a hole in the Boson field, caused by mass in different dimensions of of the same space, "stretching" the field to the point of tearing.&nbsp;I just don't see it showing them actual particles that are in essence neutral matter oceans.&nbsp; At best we will see the effects the "Boson" has on certain particles, such as light bending around stars, or particle ignitions across galaxy implosions, or a dyeing black hole.&nbsp;We should probably be careful punching holes into space and time... <br /> Posted by gbehrend</DIV></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Your first sentence makes sense, but the rest seems rather incoherent.&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <div> </div><br /><div><span style="color:#0000ff" class="Apple-style-span">"If something's hard to do, then it's not worth doing." - Homer Simpson</span></div> </div>
 
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origin

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>I've been reading that the new detector out at CERN is going to try and produce a Higgs Boson.&nbsp; Can you explain to me what a Higgs Boson actually is, and why physicists are looking to it for answers about how the Big Bang occured?&nbsp; I'm pretty hazy on it.&nbsp; I know it's supposed to be a big particle, and very exotic, prone to disintegrated immediately (so it gets detected mostly by seeing it fall apart).&nbsp;And how is it they'll know they've found a Higgs boson, if they can't detect it directly but instead must detect the bits left over after it decays?&nbsp; How can they be sure that what they detect really is the remains of a Higgs boson? <br />Posted by CalliArcale</DIV><br /><br />Go to www.sciam.com and search for 'The coming Revolutions in Particle Physics'&nbsp;and you will find an excellent article of the Higgs particle and the LHC.</p><p>This spring and summer should be very exciting - If the Higgs particle is found it will change physics on the other hand, if the Higgs particle is not found it will STILL change physics.&nbsp; Pretty cool stuff...</p><p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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centsworth_II

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'><font color="#666699">I've been reading that the new detector out at CERN is going to try and produce a Higgs Boson. <br /> Posted by CalliArcale</font></DIV></p><p>Sometimes I find New Scientist's sensational headlines irritating, but this one I think is funny:</p><h3><u><font size="4"> Higgs seen at the LHC</font></u></h3><p>Of course they're talking about Peter Higgs, the scientist for which the thus far unseen Higgs boson is named. &nbsp; &nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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derekmcd

Guest
<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>If the Higgs particle is found it will change physics on the other hand, if the Higgs particle is not found it will STILL change physics.&nbsp; Pretty cool stuff...&nbsp; <br /> Posted by origin</DIV></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>"Pretty cool stuff..."&nbsp; I, absolutely, agree.&nbsp; </p><p>However;&nbsp; I, adamantly, disagree that if the higgs particle is found, it will change physics.&nbsp; </p><p>The Higgs particle is a predicted necessity of the standard model.&nbsp; </p><p>If it is not found, well... they need to look deeper, build bigger, smash faster, etc, etc.</p><p>If it <strong><em>IS</em></strong> found, well... they <strong><em>STILL</em></strong> need to look deeper... etc, etc.&nbsp; Some questions might be answered, a few blanks might be filled in, some math might make sense, but the 'discovery' will only lead them to new, intriguing depths. </p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <div> </div><br /><div><span style="color:#0000ff" class="Apple-style-span">"If something's hard to do, then it's not worth doing." - Homer Simpson</span></div> </div>
 
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dragon04

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>&nbsp;"Pretty cool stuff..."&nbsp; I, absolutely, agree.&nbsp; However;&nbsp; I, adamantly, disagree that if the higgs particle is found, it will change physics.&nbsp; The Higgs particle is a predicted necessity of the standard model.&nbsp; If it is not found, well... they need to look deeper, build bigger, smash faster, etc, etc.If it IS found, well... they STILL need to look deeper... etc, etc.&nbsp; Some questions might be answered, a few blanks might be filled in, some math might make sense, but the 'discovery' will only lead them to new, intriguing depths. <br /> Posted by derekmcd</DIV></p><p>It's a Pirate Ship. And we can't walk the Planck.&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <em>"2012.. Year of the Dragon!! Get on the Dragon Wagon!".</em> </div>
 
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yevaud

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>It's a Pirate Ship. And we can't walk the Planck.&nbsp;&nbsp; </p><p><em> Posted by dragon04</em></DIV></p><p>Oh, don't be a Bohr.&nbsp; </p><p><br /> <img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/9/0/f9e8352a-3800-47d9-a0f0-1c76f110c36a.Medium.gif" alt="" /><br />&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><em>Differential Diagnosis:  </em>"<strong><em>I am both amused and annoyed that you think I should be less stubborn than you are</em></strong>."<br /> </p> </div>
 
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DrRocket

Guest
Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>Oh, don't be a Bohr.&nbsp; &nbsp; <br />Posted by yevaud</DIV><br /><br />If you want a good and still understandable treatment of the subject, read Leon Lederman's book "The God Particle".&nbsp; It is a pretty good explanation of the role of the Higgs boson and the background surrounding the search to verify its existence experimentally. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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derekmcd

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>If you want a good and still understandable treatment of the subject, read Leon Lederman's book "The God Particle".&nbsp; It is a pretty good explanation of the role of the Higgs boson and the background surrounding the search to verify its existence experimentally. <br /> Posted by DrRocket</DIV></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Indeed.&nbsp; Rather humorous, too.&nbsp; A very enjoyable read.&nbsp;</p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <div> </div><br /><div><span style="color:#0000ff" class="Apple-style-span">"If something's hard to do, then it's not worth doing." - Homer Simpson</span></div> </div>
 
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derekmcd

Guest
<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>Oh, don't be a Bohr.&nbsp; &nbsp; <br /> Posted by yevaud</DIV></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>I think he was Born that way, but I still consider him to be a Feynman.&nbsp; Even though his humor Hertz, it still works Fermi.<br /> </p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <div> </div><br /><div><span style="color:#0000ff" class="Apple-style-span">"If something's hard to do, then it's not worth doing." - Homer Simpson</span></div> </div>
 
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saul

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<p><BR/>Replying to:<BR/><DIV CLASS='Discussion_PostQuote'>I've been reading that the new detector out at CERN is going to try and produce a Higgs Boson.&nbsp; Can you explain to me what a Higgs Boson actually is, and why physicists are looking to it for answers about how the Big Bang occured?&nbsp; I'm pretty hazy on it.&nbsp; I know it's supposed to be a big particle, and very exotic, prone to disintegrated immediately (so it gets detected mostly by seeing it fall apart).&nbsp;And how is it they'll know they've found a Higgs boson, if they can't detect it directly but instead must detect the bits left over after it decays?&nbsp; How can they be sure that what they detect really is the remains of a Higgs boson? <br />Posted by CalliArcale</DIV></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/history/inourtime/ram/inourtime_20041118.ram</p><p>Try pasting this link from the BBC into your browser</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><img src="http://sitelife.space.com/ver1.0/content/scripts/tinymce/plugins/emotions/images/smiley-cool.gif" border="0" alt="Cool" title="Cool" /><br /></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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astralith

Guest
<p>Two questions:</p><p>When are they flipping the switch at CERN?</p><p>Is there evidence to suggest&nbsp;the Higgs Field has the same strength everywhere (intergalactic space, between two orbiting black holes, etc.)?</p>
 
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