Monday, March 18, 2013

School physics teaches us that everything is made up of atoms, and inside atoms are electrons, protons and neutrons. They, in turn, are made of quarks and other subatomic particles. Scientists have long puzzled over how these minute building blocks of the universe acquire mass. Without mass, particles wouldn't hold together and there would be no matter.

nd this is what they exactly finding at CERN  !!!!!

What is the Standard Model ?

  • The standard model is a theory of Particle Physics.
  • It says all the material around us is made up of 12 matter particle (also known as Fermions).

  • The other 11 particles predicted by the model have been found and only Higgs particle was not yet found, so the CERN was trying to find it.
  • (NOTE -- The Standard Model includes the electromagnetic, strong and weak forces and all their carrier particles, and explains well how these forces act on all of the matter particles. However, the most familiar force in our everyday lives, gravity, is not part of the Standard Model, as fitting gravity comfortably into this framework has proved to be a difficult challenge.)

What is the Higgs Boson ?

  • This particle is theoretically responsible for mass, without which there would be no gravity and no universe.
  • Therefore it is also called the “God” particle.
  • The Higgs particle was proposed in the 1960s by British physicist Peter Higgs as a way of explaining why other particles have mass.
  • CERN has been attempting to find evidence of its existence.

What is the Big Bang ?
  • The Big Bang occurred approximately 13.75 billion years ago, and it is responsible for the creation of the Universe.
  • But after the Big Bang, the universe was a gigantic soup of particles racing around at the speed of light without any mass to speak of.
  • It was through their interaction with the Higgs field that they gained mass and eventually formed the universe.
  • Thus finding the Higgs particle can throw more light on how universe was formed.

What is CERN ?
  • The European Organization for Nuclear Research also known as CERN
  • It is the world’s largest nuclear physics laboratory carrying out various experiments,
  • It is situated at Geneva, along France-Swiss border.
  • It has been operating several particle accelerators the latest one being the Large Hadron collider.
  • (CERN . It is also the birthplace of the World Wide Web )
  • India has a observor status in CERN
  • The United Nations General Assembly recently granted 'Observer status'  to CERN in UN.
  • The latest of  its pioneering effort to make the entire field of high-energy physics open access through the Sponsoring Consortium for Open Access Publishing in Particle Physics (SCOAP3) initiative.

What is the LHC (Large Hadron Collider ) ?
  • It is the world’s biggest and most powerful particle accelerator.
  •  The LHC consists of a 27-kilometre ring of superconducting magnets with a number of accelerating structures to boost the energy of the particles along the way.
  •  Two beams of protons are fired in opposite directions around it before smashing into each other to create many millions of particle collisions every second in a recreation of the conditions a fraction of a second after the Big Bang, when the Higgs field is believed to have ‘switched on’ and did the magic.
  • They are guided around the accelerator ring by a strong magnetic field maintained by superconducting electromagnets. The electromagnets are built from coils of special electric cable that operates in a superconducting state, efficiently conducting electricity without resistance or loss of energy. This requires chilling the magnets to ‑271.3°C – a temperature colder than outer space. For this reason, much of the accelerator is connected to a distribution system of liquid helium, which cools the magnets, as well as to other supply services.

What is SuperSymmetry ?

  • Its basically a hypothetical theory.
  • Supersymmetry predicts a partner particle for each particle in the Standard Model, to help explain why particles have mass
  • Supersymmetry would also link the two different classes of particles known as fermions and bosons. 
  • Particles like those in the Standard Model are classified as fermions or bosons based on a property known as spin.
  •  Fermions all have half of a unit of spin, while the bosons have 0, 1 or 2 units of spin. 
  • Supersymmetry predicts that each of the particles in the Standard Model has a partner with a spin that differs by half of a unit. 
  • So bosons are accompanied by fermions and vice versa. Linked to their differences in spin are differences in their collective properties. Fermions are very standoffish; every one must be in a different state. On the other hand, bosons are very clannish; they prefer to be in the same state. Fermions and bosons seem as different as could be, yet supersymmetry brings the two types together.
Supersymmetry is a framework that builds upon the Standard Model’s strong foundation to create a more comprehensive picture of our world. ...LHC is working on this !


  • The big bang should have created equal amounts of matter and antimatter in the early universe.
  • Comparatively, there is not much antimatter to be found. Something must have happened to tip the balance. One of the greatest challenges in physics is to figure out what happened to the antimatter, or why we see an asymmetry between matter and antimatter.
  • Antimatter particles share the same mass as their matter counterparts, but qualities such as electric charge are opposite. 
  • The positively charged positron, for example, is the antiparticle to the negatively charged electron. 
  • Matter and antimatter particles are always produced as a pair and, if they come in contact, annihilate one another, leaving behind pure energy. 
  • During the first fractions of a second of the big bang, the hot and dense universe was buzzing with particle-antiparticle pairs popping in and out of existence.
  •  If matter and antimatter are created and destroyed together, it seems the universe should contain nothing but leftover energy.

Tit bits 
  • Dark energy makes up approximately 70% of the universe and appears to be associated with the vacuum in space.
  • Unlike normal matter, dark matter does not interact with the electromagnetic force. This means it does not absorb, reflect or emit light, making it extremely hard to spot. 
  • Dark matter seems to outweigh visible matter roughly six to one, making up about 26% of all the matter in the universe. 
  •  The matter we know and that makes up all stars and galaxies only accounts for 4% of the content of the universe! But what is dark matter? One idea is that it could contain "supersymmetric particles" – hypothesized particles that are partners to those already known in the Standard Model. Experiments at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) may provide more direct clues about dark matter.

What are QUARKS ?

·  Quarks are  the elementary constituents from which Hadrons (baryons and mesons) are made.
·        There are three main types (or flavors) of quark known as UpDown and Strange.
·        Each type of quark has different properties of mass, charge, baryon number and strangeness . 

  • Quarks also have a corresponding antiquark which has similar properties but opposite and equal charge. Antiquarks have the same symbol as the quark but with an underline i.e. an antidown has the symbol d.

·        Any particle containing quarks is termed a Hadron, however quarks do not ever exist on their own but bound into quark-antiquark pairs or triplets by the strong force. This is known as quark confinement

  • In a triplet there will be three quarks (q q q) or three antiquarks (qqq ) but never a mixture, for example a proton consists of two up quarks and a down quark, these are called Baryons
  • In a pair there will always be one quark and one antiquark (q q )but never two quarks or two antiquarks, an example of this is the Pion, these are called Mesons

The truth quark on its own has a K.E. 23 times that of a proton at comparable speeds.


Who was Satyendranath Bose ...nd what is his relation with this Higgs Boson ?

Satyendranath Bose was born on January 1, 1894 in Calcutta (now Kolkata). His father Surendranath Bose was employed in the Engineering Department of the East India Railway.

As a student of the Hindu High School, Bose once was awarded 110 marks out of 100 in mathematics because he had solved some problems in the exam paper by more than one method. He made a name for himself in school due to his love for science.Later he attended the Presidency College also in Calcutta, where another noted scientist Meghnad Saha was his fellow student.  Bose came in contact with teachers like Jagdish Chandra Bose and Prafulla Chandra Ray, who provided inspiration to aim high in life.

In 1924, while working as Reader in the Physics Department of University of Dacca, Bose wrote a paper on novel way of counting states with identical particles. This paper was seminal in creating the very important field of quantum statistics. His paper was not accepted for publication at once.

  Not losing heart, Satyendranath Bose sent the article directly to Albert Einstein in Germany with a request to help it get published in the leading German language science journal Zeitschrift fur Physik. In his covering letter to Einstein, Bose wrote “though a complete stranger to you, I do not feel any hesitation in making such a request. Because we are all your pupils though profiting only by your teachings  through your writings.”

Einstein, recognizing the importance of the paper, translated it into German and submitted it for publication on Bose’s behalf. The publication changed the life of Satyendra Nath Bose. The Dacca University now opened its eyes and agreed to fund his tour to Europe, even though he had only possessed a Master’s degree and no further qualifications.
Bose first visited Paris in 1924, where he stayed for a year. He conducted research in the Madame Curie Laboratory, which had special facilities. The next year, he left Paris for Berlin to join Einstein and work with him. There he came into close contact with noted scientists like Schroedinger and Heisenberg. He participated in all the meetings and discussions held there.

While Bose was in Berlin, the post of a Professor fell vacant in Dacca University. Bose’s friends persuaded him to apply but he was hesitant, as he had not got his doctorate yet. A recommendation by Einstein could have fixed the matter. With great hesitation, Bose approached Einstein for help. Einstein was surprised. He said “you are so proficient in your subject. Is their need for any other certificate?”  He wrote a letter to the authorities in the Dacca University, which had a desired effect. In 1926, Satyendranath Bose was appointed Professor and Head of the Department of Physics. 

Bose served in Dacca University for nearly 25 years. As a teacher he was admired by his students who held him in high esteem. In 1944, when he was the Head of the Science Section in Dacca University, Bose was chosen as the General President of the 31st  session of the Indian Science Congress.

Bose, who worked with Albert Einstein to bring out the Bose-Einstein statistics and the theory of Bose-Einstein Condensate in the 1920s, was a natural candidate for a Nobel Prize which he never got.  

Yet, at least ten scientists have been awarded the Nobel for their research in the field of particle physics based on concepts like the Bose-Einstein Condensate or the Boson.

'Indians are incapable of achieving anything great in science. At best, they are experts in subjects like philosophy “ was the view most held in the West during those years. Satyendranath Bose dispelled that impression and did yeoman service in the fields of science, with some pioneering contributions in the fields of quantum physics.

Satyendranath Bose was a self-taught scholar who had a wide range of interests in varied fields including physics, mathematics, chemistry, biology, mineralogy, arts, literature and music.

Back home, Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore dedicated his 

only book on science – Vishwa Parichay to him. The Government of India conferred the Padma Vibhushan award on Satyendranath Bose in 1954. At the age of 80, Bose suffered an unexpected and a severe heart attack and breathed his last on the 4th of February 1974. 

The CERN experiment has once again brought focus on Satyendranath Bose. For India God Particle is as much Boson as Higgs.


Blog Archive