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CERN | Geneva | Switzerland

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Is the big Higgs news for next week?

No! But some surprises might come after the Moriond conference, once theorists have time to combine and interpret the numerous improved results and newly designed analyses that will be presented over the next two weeks. New results will come not only from the Higgs boson searches but also from a plethora of new measurements. This is exactly what theorists need to put the Standard Model to the most stringent tests and find the way to a more encompassing theory. High precision measurements such as those presented by LHCb last year have a huge impact in removing some of the leeway in theoretical models.

The “Rencontres de Moriond” is the first major physics conference of the year. It will start on March 2 at an Italian ski resort. Traditionally, this is where most High Energy physics experiments present their latest results but this year, the conference might come too soon after data-taking stopped at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), not giving enough time to the experiments to produce new results on all topics. The next updates will be prepared for the Large Hadron Collider Physics Conference in May, the European Physical Society Meeting in July and possibly for the CERN Council meeting in December to name a few.

Many people were hoping CMS and ATLAS, the two large multi-purpose experiments operating at the LHC at CERN, would finally announce that the boson discovered last year is really a Higgs boson. Unfortunately, it is still too early to say. Nevertheless, both experiments can be expected to show interesting updates on the new boson mass measurement, decay rates and spin, all of which will provide a clearer picture.

What will be of particular interest will be to see if the small deviations with respect to the Standard Model expectations observed last year by both experiments in various decay rates are going away or increasing. Both ATLAS and CMS obtained sometimes more, sometimes fewer events containing the new boson than what is expected from the Standard Model although these observations are all still consistent with the Standard Model. An excess of events in the two-photon decay rate could indicate that new particles contribute to the process, a possibility that many theorists hope would reveal the presence of supersymmetry.

A summary of all mass and decay rate measurements from ATLAS and CMS as of last December. The signal strength should be one for a Standard Model Higgs boson. The error margins are still too large everywhere to draw any conclusion.

New results will also be presented on searches for new particles such as heavier bosons or supersymmetric particles. Of course, if only one experiment observes a small deviation, the excitement will be limited until the other experiment responds. If both experiments see similar hints, it could get interesting.

Many physics topics will be covered and theorists will provide their latest models and interpretations.  So stay tune over the next two weeks, as I will be reporting all the highlights from this conference as they unfold.

Pauline Gagnon

To be alerted of new postings, follow me on Twitter: @GagnonPauline or sign-up on this mailing list to receive and e-mail notification.


  • It is a good work, but it is not the end.

  • Swiss Sam

    It is not the Higgs boson until it is spin zero. That is that.

    I like the Moriond conferences because they like to feature (push) Englert as ULB runs the theory side…funny becasue Englert didn’t have a boson in his paper.

  • Ron Bushey

    Keep up the good work! What about the unresolved issue of the edge of the universe? ( when in my hypothosis there is only one) There is only energy and empty space, but to have the two coincide there has to be what I call “absolute nothing”. Absolute nothing is neither vacuum, caused by lack of masses, nor energy.

  • wsp

    We want to know the mass of proton or electron by higgs theory.

  • Hello,

    I guess you want to see if the Higgs theory can predict the mass of fundamental particles like quarks and electrons? This is not expected in the near future. As for the proton, it is a composite particle so only part of its mass comes from the sum of the masses of its constituents, the rest comes from binding energy.

    Cheers, Pauline

  • Hello Ron,

    sorry but I cannot comment on this. You make suppositions that have little in common with the content of this article but simply interpreting it in your own theory. I cannot comment on that.

    Cheers, Pauline

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  • Ala Díaz Albo

    La fuente de masa, atribuida al famoso bosón, no puede ser otra que el resultado de corrientes impetuosas capaces de ondular el fondo etéreo y generar focos puntuales vibratorios (infinidad de subpartículas muchas de ellas con características determinantes de “géneros de movimiento” dables de conformar, primeramente las bases constituyentes de las nubes estelares, luego por gravitación las estructuras elementales y atómicas del mundo que observamos…, tránsito, en fin, del ciclo cósmicos que va desde la materia de movimiento de “punto cero”, pasando por el mundo visibles hasta se degradación final vía de los agujeros negros. En suma, ciclos galácticos a través de, probablemente, billones de miles de nuestros años

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