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      07-04-2012, 05:50 PM   #1
kevinbahnz
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GOD particle ?

who, what, when , where and why? Mostly what does it do and why?
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      07-04-2012, 09:03 PM   #2
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      07-05-2012, 08:44 AM   #3
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6 reasons why the 'God particle' matters


In the world of science, the excitement doesn't mount much higher than the frenzy Wednesday around the announcement that scientists at the world's biggest atom smasher may have found the "God particle."

The discovery is called a boson, a class of sub-atomic particle, but the description stopped just short of confirming that it's the long-sought Higgs boson particle.

While there are still questions to ask and research to do to confirm if it is indeed the Higgs boson, physicists see massive implications to the discovery.

"It's helping us understand the big universal question, which is what are we made out of," says Philippe Di Stefano, a physics professor at Queen's University in Kingston, Ont.

The discovery won't have an instant impact on everyday life, but scientists see great potential in what it might lead to in years to come.

"This is not going to be able to give us a solution for the energy problem or climate warming or the other, the immediate, pressing problems that face us," says Pekka Sinervo, a physics professor at the University of Toronto. "It is, however, a piece of the puzzle that we need … to understand the world."

Sinervo likens the accomplishments of the scientists behind Wednesday's announcement to what physicists and scientists were doing in the 1930s to understand quantum mechanics and the nucleus of an atom.

"No one at that time knew what the potential benefits or uses of that knowledge would be."

Here's a look at some reasons the discovery announced Wednesday is seen as so vital.

It's a crossroads in science

"To me, the takeaway message is that we seem to be closing a chapter on the last decades of particle physics, and we're entering a new era of examining the properties, and we hope very much to push beyond the standard model. We're really at a crossroads now.

"It’s an indication that the last 45 years of particle physics has been on the right track, and now we hope to look beyond the standard model into why particles gain mass. This may be observations of supersymmetry, other dimensions, [and other] theories that were developed to go beyond the Higgs boson."

— Rob McPherson, physics professor at the University of Victoria and spokesperson for the ATLAS Canada Collaboration

It allows physicists to try to go where no scientist has gone before

“Without the Higgs particle, other particles, such as electrons and quarks, would be massless and the universe would not be what it is.

“Now, with the amazing results from the [Large Hadron Collider], we are finally finding growing experimental evidence that the Higgs really exists.

“The second part of the story about the Higgs particle is even more exciting as it provides us with a window to new physics — a tool for the exploration of the truly unknown.

“The next stage will be a detailed and careful study of its properties. Successful completion of this second stage will bring us closer to uncovering new physics, explaining dark matter and other mysteries of the universe.”

— Prof. Valentin Khoze, director of Durham University’s Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology in Durham, England

It could lead to unexpected everyday applications

"This discovery is certainly basically fundamental research. In fundamental research, there are no guarantees that there will be direct and immediate applications to everyday life.

"However, fundamental research has turned out a huge number of things that are relevant for everyday life.… For instance, in the 1930s, Carl Anderson discovered anti-matter, and now anti-matter plays a very very large role in positron emission tomography (PET), and PET scans are really widely used nowadays in medicine, so this is a very important application to the lives of many many people."

— Philippe Di Stefano, physics professor at Queen's University in Kingston, Ont.

It helps answer basic questions about how the universe evolved

"Today's discovery teaches us something fundamental about the building blocks of the universe and how the fundamental particles that build the world around us acquire mass.

"The Higgs boson matters because it tells us about 'matter.' This is curiosity-driven research and addresses basic questions about the evolution of the universe.

"In addition, this curiosity-driven research also leads to many important applications. It was exciting to see how today's seminar at CERN [the European organization for nuclear research] was broadcast via the World Wide Web to all continents, using the technology pioneered at CERN. Particle accelerators have many applications in material science and medicine."

— Prof. Stefan Soldner-Rembold, from the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Manchester, England, quoted on the Guardian website

It could change how physics is taught in high school

"Up till now, we've had this model that has been pretty successful, but this one missing piece had been there now for over 20 years, close to 30 years. There were actually two pieces missing when the model was first put together over 30 years ago. The first one [the top quark] was discovered … about 17 years ago.

"It's a little bit like saying we now know that Pluto isn't a planet any longer because we've learned a lot about how planets behave and what the nature of planet really is. The astronomers have said Pluto doesn't really qualify any longer.

"So it changes the textbooks and it certainly changes in Grade 11 and Grade 12 physics when people talk about the fundamental particles, we can now say, assuming this is the standard model Higgs boson, that the Higgs boson has also been observed. And that in a certain sense … completes a picture that we get from the standard model."

— Pekka Sinervo, professor of physics at the University of Toronto and senior vice-president of research for the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR)

It's proof that long, hard work can pay off

"It's impossible to avoid the conclusion we've discovered a new particle. The chance of either of these experiments being wrong is less than one in a million, and for both of them to be wrong is more like one in a trillion. We can safely conclude something new is there. Now the question is what exactly is it?

"All the evidence suggests it's the Higgs boson, but the results released today just aren’t strong enough to conclude that it is the Higgs. You have to show that it looks like a duck, waddles like a duck, and quacks like a duck before you can say it's a duck.

"It's been an extraordinarily long haul. Some of us have been involved in this since the early '80s. That’s a 30-year journey. Personally, I've been involved in this chase for 25 years. The results today are one of the stronger forms of delayed gratification."

— Pekka Sinervo, a physics professor at the University of Toronto

NOTE: Several of the comments above were gathered by the Science Media Centre of Canada.

http://news.ca.msn.com/top-stories/6...rticle-matters
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      07-05-2012, 08:49 AM   #4
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At least the universe didn't go kablewy like some people said it would.
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      07-05-2012, 09:15 AM   #5
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This doesn't change anything. It just confirms the standard model of subatomic physics that scientists have trusted for over 50 years.

There is nothing surprising about the discovery. Just gratifying to those that have worked to get there. Also, there is very little data assembled on the H boson so until that happens, there's nothing even particularly interesting in the discovery. There's a bunch of interesting stuff we don't know about it (and can't logically predict).

It won't "change" the way Physics is taught, just "confirms" the model that's been taught for the past 20+ years in schools has, in fact, been fully observed. We're no closer to flying cars.
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      07-05-2012, 09:18 AM   #6
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It isn't a god particle and they need to kill that nickname.

The Higgs field slows down fundamental particles, imparting mass as they pass through it (think balls of varying sizes moving through water. Over simplistic idea, but it works). While the field itself cannot be directly observed, the Higgs boson, which is a force carrier, can (think of it like a water molecule in the balls/water idea) and confirming the Higgs boson exists confirms the existence of the Higgs field. Until now, we weren't certain just exactly where mass came from.
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      07-05-2012, 09:22 AM   #7
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Quote:
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We're no closer to flying cars.
Boo, way to rain on my parade.

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      07-05-2012, 09:32 AM   #8
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We're no closer to flying cars.
How about matter transporters and time travel machines?
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      07-05-2012, 09:36 AM   #9
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      07-05-2012, 09:58 AM   #10
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Boo, way to rain on my parade.

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Originally Posted by Pillzilla View Post
How about matter transporters and time travel machines?
It's OK guys, there are Hall Effect thrusters in development and testing which have been used in space and will make it onto the ISS in a few years. One of the coolest futuristic-looking technologies we have, straight out of start trek or starcraft.

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      07-05-2012, 09:58 AM   #11
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It isn't a god particle and they need to kill that nickname.
+1 and good analogy
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      07-05-2012, 10:38 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS32 View Post
It isn't a god particle and they need to kill that nickname.

The Higgs field slows down fundamental particles, imparting mass as they pass through it (think balls of varying sizes moving through water. Over simplistic idea, but it works). While the field itself cannot be directly observed, the Higgs boson, which is a force carrier, can (think of it like a water molecule in the balls/water idea) and confirming the Higgs boson exists confirms the existence of the Higgs field. Until now, we weren't certain just exactly where mass came from.
You said, "balls."
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      07-05-2012, 12:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yakev724 View Post
It's OK guys, there are Hall Effect thrusters in development and testing which have been used in space and will make it onto the ISS in a few years. One of the coolest futuristic-looking technologies we have, straight out of start trek or starcraft.

It's amazing how long the technology has been around and yet we're just now taking a serious look at it.
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      07-05-2012, 07:30 PM   #14
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God particle is nothing more than science trying to justify itself over and over again...
It makes the scientist happy and Scientology.
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      07-05-2012, 07:47 PM   #15
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God particle is nothing more than science trying to justify itself over and over again...
It makes the scientist happy and Scientology.
...the fuck?

I suggest you educate yourself on the manner in which science has and continues to function before making claims like that.

...and as was mentioned, forget any relation of God to the title, or for that matter, anything having to do with, this discovery.
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      07-05-2012, 07:50 PM   #16
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If you have been recently watching this so call news and new things that have been popping up lately... This new thing is just gaining more momentum for scientific research. Please do give me all the highlights on this God particle.
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      07-05-2012, 07:52 PM   #17
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There are countless ways to improve energy and such but science is not pulling towards that... they contribute a lot but policy makers and politics always stop it.
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      07-05-2012, 07:56 PM   #18
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If you have been recently watching this so call news and new things that have been popping up lately... This new thing is just gaining more momentum for scientific research. Please do give me all the highlights on this God particle.
News (and subsequent public understanding) and scientific research don't mix. Scientific discovery is a very long and tedious process, and the news and public want excitement where there just isn't any. That's probably why people who look past the hype are quick to question the significance of what was discovered. As I already said, there was nothing unexpected, just an experimental confirmation of something believed to have existed for 50+ years, with no significant consequences.
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      07-05-2012, 07:57 PM   #19
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Cool I would like more concrete information on exactly its significance
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      07-05-2012, 08:06 PM   #20
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There are countless ways to improve energy and such but science is not pulling towards that... they contribute a lot but policy makers and politics always stop it.
The U.S. earns a ton of money from gasoline and nat gas exports and unfortunately does prohibit development in many key areas which may significantly reduce energy cost and fossil fuel dependence in the future, while funding "interesting" solar and wind companies. It's a mess.

There is a very indirect important consequence of scientific research that goes on in National Labs across the country. That is the attraction of smart people from around the world to come work in the US. Many such people immigrated in the 90s and as a result, many of those people diffused into the private sector and made a big impact on the US economy (and unfortunately, in the finance sector as well). Today, this is not the case, and even though effects aren't immediately apparent, it's much more of an issue for the future of the US than most realize.

This discovery was made at LHC/CERN (EU-funded collider in the Alps), and there is much more enthusiasm for this sort of thing in Germany, France, etc.

Another limiting factor is the FDA--scientists working to develop new facilities for Cancer treatment basically avoid the U.S. because it is so much more difficult to get funding and approval here. Best facilities are in Germany and Japan iirc.
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      07-05-2012, 08:11 PM   #21
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Thanks for sharing and clearing it up with me
I think I was a little apprehensive because they called it God particle lol.
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      07-05-2012, 08:58 PM   #22
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Thanks for sharing and clearing it up with me
I think I was a little apprehensive because they called it God particle lol.
I'd try and explain to you what it is but I'd have a hard time. The youtube above does it pretty well without a post-undergraduate understanding.

Basically, the particles you've heard of (protons, neutrons, electrons that make up atoms, and maybe photons that make up radio, micro waves, and light) interact via other, even smaller particles. These interactions vary in nature (different forces act between different types of these smaller particles).

The theory behind all of these subatomic particles acting together to make up the components of atoms, and subsequently, matter that everything is made of (as well as the E+M waves which allow you to read this with your eyes), is called the Standard Model, which has been around and widely accepted for about 50 years.

Most of the subatomic particles which make up this model have been discovered decades ago. The sort of setups required to experimentally isolate them and record evidence for their existence were around back then. The more temperamental particles, including this Higgs Boson, required advanced experimental setups to detect.

These particle experiment labs take 10-20 years from design to operation and hundreds of millions to few billions of dollars to construct. They are only built about every 20 years somewhere in the world, and all the scientists working on an area which could benefit usually collaborate with that project since it gives them access to results not found anywhere else. Then they're phased out, typically after a few upgrades, after another 20 years as a new one begins operation.

Anyway, the LHC started operation 2 years ago, and was designed and built with experimental discovery of the Higgs Boson as one of the key goals. It's a huge circular particle collider 17 miles long, in a tunnel carved into the Alps. Pretty cool place.

I used to work on a mechanism of interaction between two other subatomic particles, neutrinos, with a pretty large experimental setup in Japan.
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