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Susanne Reffert | IPMU | Japan

View Blog | Read Bio

The Week of Higgs

It has been an exciting week at CERN. Of course rumors had been flying for a while already. And even though most people in the theory division are not directly related to the experiments, people know people and information was passed around.

Certainly, I wasn’t going to miss the announcement of the results. To make sure, I positioned myself strategically in the auditorium already at 10 am, four hours before the seminar, armed with food, drink, and my iPad. At 10 am, the auditorium was already half full. And I wasn’t the only one from the theory group.

As time passed, more and more people were pouring in, many people who were part of either ATLAS or CMS had come in from their home institutions especially for this occasion. Security was stepped up and only people carrying their access batches were let in. By noon, the room had already gone past full capacity. People were sitting on the floor everywhere and security people did not let anyone enter anymore. Outside the doors, a disappointed crowd was forming. People who thought arriving two hours in advance was enough were in for a surprise.

Even though it was hard to concentrate on work waiting in the lecture hall, it was fun being part of this excited buzzing crowd, all waiting eagerly for the announcement. When at the beginning of the seminar, Rolf Heuer thanked the whole LHC team for their great work, the crowd broke into a huge round of roaring applause.

There’s no need reiterating the results here another time. There’s not enough data to call it a discovery yet, but we’re all confident that it’s just a matter of time until the discovery can be announced. I’m not sure whether on that day, there will be as much excitement in the air as on the day of the first announcement this week. It is a day worth remembering and I am happy to have been part of it, to have been right here at CERN. And I am looking forward to next year to see events unfolding further at LHC.

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