Work continues on the Large Hadron Collider experiments with the elusive Higgs Boson particle despite closure of the collider for upgrades. While the existence of the Higgs Boson has been predicted since the 1960's, it was only in 2012, that this particle was proven to exist. It was theorized that matter would not exist without this sub-atomic particle as it is the Higgs Boson that gives other particles mass.
Skynews on Monday June 23, 2014, reported physicists at CERN, Switzerland have learned more from the ground breaking discovery and analysis of the mountain of data from the collisions and particle smashing experiments at the Large Hadron Collider. The studies show the " boson decays neatly to a group of sub-particles called fermions, in line with Standard Model theory, the paper said.
'This is an enormous breakthrough,' said Markus Klute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) who led the research at the LHC's Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS).
'Now we know that particles like electrons get their mass by coupling to the Higgs field, which is really exciting.'
The LHC is expected to resume operations in 2015 with a three year project on "super-symmetry" which scientists hope will explain dark matter, the substance that makes up most of the Universe.
Where? The Large Hadron Collider is a 27 km circular tunnel buried under the Swiss- French border close to Geneva.
What are they doing here? Physicists here conduct experiments to explain the beginnings of the Universe and to understand the composition of what makes up matter. There are theories that at the time of the Big Bang, matter and anti-matter were created in mostly equal amounts and it may be the very tiny portions of rubble left over that form the Universe. It is the experiments on sub-atomic particles and the enormous forces required to smash the particles that help scientists with their models and theories.
In trying to find and prove the existence of the Higgs Boson particle, physicists from around the world had to sift through data of billions of proton smash ups, looking for evidence from this elusive particle.
Can you visit the Large Hadron Collider? The LHC conducts free tours which are led by retired physicists and PHD students. However you do need to book several weeks in advance as they fill quickly. Click here to find out more on the LHC and why it is worth visiting.