The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) announced today that the ATLAS and CMS collaboration has spotted a particle consistent with the Higgs boson. Both experiments have observed a new particle in the mass region around 125-126 GeV. Carleton researchers, who made direct contributions to this discovery through the ATLAS experiment, are available to speak to the media about the discovery.
Professor, Department of Physics
Carleton Group Leader, ATLAS experiment at CERN
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“This is a very exciting time to be in particle physics”, says Oakham. “It is wonderful to be a part of this international scientific experiment and to work with the dedicated research group at Carleton University.”
“We have a discovery – we have observed a new particle consistent with a Higgs boson,” said CERN director Rolf Heuer in a statement. “But which one? That remains open. It is a historic milestone but it is only the beginning.”
About the Higgs boson:
The Higgs boson is the only piece missing in an otherwise extremely successful and well-tested theoretical model describing all the fundamental processes of nature called the Standard Model. The particle is believed to be responsible for giving mass to all the particles in the universe. Its discovery is one of the main goals behind the construction of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN.
Up to now, tantalizing hints have been seen by the experiments in this mass region, but they have not been strong enough to claim a discovery. The experiments have more than double the data than they had compared to last year and have been improving their analysis techniques. The increased data and improved analyses mean that the experiments are more sensitive to finding Higgs-like events.
About the ATLAS Group at Carleton:
The ATLAS group at Carleton, which includes faculty, research assistants and students, plays a key role in the research being conducted at CERN. The group’s original involvement included contributing to the construction of detector components that were shipped to CERN six years ago. These were installed in ATLAS and are now producing data along with the other detectors.
The 15-member Carleton group is actively involved in the ATLAS project, calibrating the detectors and analyzing the data gathered. Carleton team members who have provided crucial contributions to the Higgs analyses being presented tomorrow include faculty member Thomas Koffas and research associates Fabien Tarrade, Dag Gillberg and Jean-Francois Marchand. In addition, faculty member Manuella Vincter and graduate students Kate Whalen and Jim Lacey have worked on new event reconstruction techniques that were an important ingredient in the Higgs Boson searches by the ATLAS collaboration.
Click here for more information on the CERN announcement.
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