LHC Claims New Particle Discovery
|5:08:38 AM, Wednesday, July 04, 2012|
"(BBC July 4 2012) Cern scientists reporting at conferences in the UK and Geneva claim the discovery of a new particle consistent with the Higgs boson.
The particle has been the subject of a 45-year hunt to explain how matter attains its mass.
Both of the two Higgs-hunting experiments at the Large Hadron Collider have reached a level of certainty worthy of a "discovery".
More work will be needed to be certain that what they see is a Higgs, however.
The CMS team claimed they had seen a "bump" in their data corresponding to a particle weighing in at 125.3 gigaelectronvolts (GeV) - about 133 times heavier than the proton at the heart of every atom.
Indications are strong, but it remains to be seen whether the particle the team reports is in fact the Higgs - those answers will certainly not come on Wednesday.
The result announced at Cern, home of the LHC in Geneva, was met with applause.
The CMS team claimed that by combining two of its data sets, they had attained a confidence level just at the "five-sigma" point - about a one-in-3.5 million chance that the signal they see would appear if there were no Higgs particle.
However, a full combination of the CMS data brings that number just back to 4.9 sigma - a one-in-2 million chance..."