Ten years after the Higgs, physicists face the nightmare of finding nothing else

socratus

socratus
Dec 10, 2008
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Israel
www.worldnpa.org
Ten years after the Higgs, physicists face the nightmare of finding nothing else
13 JUN 2022 1:30 PM BY ADRIAN CHO
Unless Europe’s Large Hadron Collider coughs up a surprise,
the field of particle physics may wheeze to its end
A decade ago, particle physicists were thrilled by the world.
On 4 July 2012, 6000 researchers working with the world's biggest atom smasher,
the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at the European particle physics laboratory, CERN,
announced they had discovered the Higgs boson, a massive, fleeting particle key
to their abstruse explanation of how other fundamental particles get their mass.
The discovery fulfilled a 45-year-old prediction, completed a theory called the
standard model, and thrust physicists into the spotlight.
Then came a long hangover. Before the 27-kilometer-long ring-shaped LHC started
to take data in 2010, physicists fretted that it might produce the Higgs and nothing else,
leaving no clue to what lies beyond the standard model. So far, that nightmare scenario
is coming true. “It’s a bit disappointing,” allows Barry Barish, a physicist at the California
Institute of Technology. “I thought we would discover supersymmetry,” the leading
extension of the standard model.