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article imageHiggs particle may not have been discovered

By Stephen Morgan     Nov 9, 2014 in Science
It is possible that scientists at the famous CERN laboratory in Switzerland have made a mistake about the discovery of the Higgs boson or "God Particle."
Two years ago scientists using the Large Hadron Collider at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) announced that they had discovered the Higgs particle or Higgs boson. The discovery was considered so momentous that the main two scientists involved, Peter Higgs and Francois Englert, received the Nobel Prize for their work.
Now that discovery is being put in doubt. Physicists at the University of Southern Denmark's Center for Cosmology and Particle Physics Phenomenology are saying that while the CERN scientists have discovered a new particle, it may not be the Higgs boson or “God Particle” as it is sometimes called. According to them, the findings in CERN are not conclusive evidence that it exists.
Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN
Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN
The Higgs boson is thought to be responsible for all the mass in the universe and its detection would be a major confirmation of the Standard Model, a theory which most scientists think is the correct analysis of how the universe was formed and how it operates. According to the theory, particles get their mass by passing through or interacting with a Higgs field and this field would need its own particle, the Higgs boson.
The Danish scientists, however, are suggesting that the experiments at CERN may not have detected the Higgs particle and that there are alternative explanations for their findings.
Science Daily quotes Mads Toudal Frandsen, the author of the new report, who says,
"The CERN data is generally taken as evidence that the particle is the Higgs particle. It is true that the Higgs particle can explain the data but there can be other explanations, we would also get this data from other particles."
While the new analysis doesn't say that the CERN findings are categorically wrong, Frandsen suggests that "The current data is not precise enough to determine exactly what the particle is. It could be a number of other known particles."
It may be that they have discovered a “techni-higgs” particle, which, in fact, is the basis of a quite different model of the development of the universe.
Tech Times points out that there is one major weakness in the Higgs-Standard Model Theory and that is that while the Higgs boson may give an anchor to the fundamental forces which are the building blocks of matter, it fails to explain the role of dark matter, which is thought to make up the majority of the matter in the universe and is not visible to us.
However, if the techni-higgs particle is really what has been discovered this gives quite a different scenario. Frandsen explained that,
"A techni-higgs particle is not an elementary particle. Instead, it consists of so-called techni-quarks, which we believe are elementary," he says.
"Techni-quarks may bind together in various ways to form for instance techni-higgs particles, while other combinations may form dark matter. We therefore expect to find several different particles at the LHC, all built by techni-quarks."
According to the International Business Times, Frandsen insists that, "The current data is not precise enough to determine exactly what the particle is. It could be a number of other known particles."
The explanation put forward by the scientists at the Danish university proposes that “The techni-higgs is entirely different. If they exist, techni-quarks must be bound together by an as-of-yet unknown force of nature dubbed the technicolor force.” They believe that CERN may be capable of identifying these particles in the future, if their work hasn't done so already.
The original article was first published in the journal Physical Review D.
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