The Higgs Boson And Understanding Mass
the reasons world scientists have spent some 15 years and $9 billion building the massive 17-mile-long underground racetrack
known as the Large Hadron Collider near Geneva, Switzerland is a quest to find an obscure particle identified as the Higgs
Boson is named after Peter Higgs, a physicist at the University of Edinburgh and one of the scientists who theorized its existence.
just what a Higgs Boson is and why world physicists are spending so much time and money tracking it requires a look into the
relatively new world of quantum physics. And for most folks, that is a strange world indeed. Just to grasp how quantum physicians
think we must be willing to consider cats that both exist and do not exist within boxes, or believe in parallel universes
where things are similar but yet different than the one in which we exist.
way of looking at what is going on at Geneva is to talk about “particle physics.” Since the days when scientists
learned how to smash atoms to make very deadly bombs, there has been a quest to explore the heart of matter which we understand
is comprised of atoms. From basic high school physics we know that an atom is a very small and basic unit of matter. It consists
of a central nucleus surrounded by negatively charged electrons. The whole configuration reminds us of planets circling a
sun within a solar system.
of atoms can bind themselves together forming a molecule. And molecules appear to be the building blocks of the objects that
comprise our world, including ourselves. This is known as matter.
is, however, a problem with this picture. When you study things at the atomic level, there is a strange awareness that a lot
of empty space exists not only within the atoms, but around them. Thus contemporary physicists have been scratching their
heads over a question that has boggled their minds for a long time. While we understand matter, we do not know why matter
has mass. In other words, why is it that we can sit comfortably in a chair without falling through it to a floor that should
not support either us or the chair. That is because all matter contains more space than it does solid material.
the new concept of particle physics. Here we dig deep within the atom to find that scientists have erected an entirely new
concept of how things are put together at an extreme molecular level. They have identified something called the quark which
is an elementary particle and thus a fundamental element in matter.
combine to form composite particles that are called hadrons. Protons and neutrons are classified as hadrons. But the physicists
have found that other hadrons called mesons (one quark and one antiquark) and baryons (three quarks. Protons and neutrons
are identified as baryons. The mesons include kaons and pions.
physics there is something called the Standard Model. Within this model there are six types of quarks, six types of things
called leptons and four things called bosons. Bosons are described as composite particles within the Standard Model. For this
article, attempting to describe them any farther, or explain what leptons are, would serve little purpose.
swimming around in the strange world of quantum physics dreamed up the concept of the Higgs Boson as a way to try to explain
how matter has mass. Higgs and his fellow scientists reason that something yet unseen makes up the glue that holds these particles
together and turns matter into mass. And whatever that thing is, it exists throughout the Universe. Thus they reason there
has to be a particle or boson that carries some kind of magnetic field, known as the Higgs Field. As other particles pass
through the Higgs field, they are drawn together until the particle gains mass.
you may have noticed a link between the composite of particles known as hadrons and the machine scientists are working so
hard to get running near the Swiss/French border. They appropriately call it the Hadron Collider because they want to use
it to smash these tiny particles together after sending them at nearly the speed of light in opposite directions through their
elaborate race track.
they want to do this? There is a very scary reason that has a number of world scientists worried that the physicists working
at the European Organization for Nuclear Research project, also known as CERN, may be about to unleash an energy capable of
destroying the world.
thing, they want to recreate the Big Bang and test this long debated theory of how the universe was formed.
to this theory, before the Big Bank the universe was extremely small and matter existed only as free quarks. Once the explosion
occurred, there was rapid inflation, quarks combined into hadrons, the forces separated, atoms formed as matter, and matter
condensed into stars and galaxies were formed.
scientists want to simulate conditions that existed within a minute fraction of a second after the Big Bang. They plan to
smash hadrons and then study what happens.
machine crashed last fall when the team attempted to get it operating. It has taken a year to make repairs and add new safeguards
to prevent the same problem from developing this time. Sometime in October or November, CERN engineers say they hope to begin
crashing protons at an injection energy of 450 billion electron volts and then ramp up the energy until the protons are driven
by 3.5 trillion electron volts of energy apiece. Then after the Christmas holidays, all hell will be let loose . . . whatever
articles we have addressed the frightening possibility that the collider might create tiny black holes that could eventually
consume the Earth. The scientists say that while this is possible, they believe it is highly improbable. So they are willing
to conduct the experiment anyway, taking even a tiny risk just to gain knowledge? Are they nuts?
is the new kicker.
also want to go on a quest to find a Higgs Boson. But there is something strange about this event, even for people caught
up in the world of quantum physics.
Times writer Dennis Overbye called this test “one of the most bizarre and revolutionary theories in science.”
wrote: “I’m talking about the notion that the troubled collider is being sabotaged by its own future. A pair of
otherwise distinguished physicists have suggested that the hypothesized Higgs boson, which physicists hope to produce with
the collider, might be so abhorrent to nature that its creation would ripple backward through time and stop and collider before
it could make one, like a time traveler who goes back in time to kill his grandfather.”
strange warning has been issued by Holger Bech Nielsen of the Niels Bohr Institute, Copenhagen, and Masao Ninomiya, Yukawa
Institute for Theoretical Physics, Kyoto, Japan, in a series of papers.
must be our prediction that all Higgs-producing machines shall have bad luck,” the two warned.
this to be a strange prophetic statement that runs parallel to a similar prediction recently given to us by the entity The
Abba Father. This entity assured us that the collider would fail last year and that it was going to fail again this time.
We were told that spiritual forces were involved in preventing the machine from ever operating.