A few months ago, scientists from the Large Hadron Collider announced they had found a new particle, one that could be the Higgs boson. The Higgs particle is thought to have properties explaining how other particles have mass. But the first signs of this new particle were detected over a year ago. So why did physicists wait this long to announce the discovery of the Higgs?
The Higgs boson is a very difficult particle to find. The Large Hadron Collider creates Higgs bosons by smashing other particles together at high speeds. Sometimes one of these collisions creates a Higgs particle. However, the Higgs is not stable; it lasts just millionths of a second before breaking down into other particles. It is these other particles that are detected. Continue reading Finding the Higgs boson