The particle found by the Large Hadron Collider in 2012 has been confirmed to be the Higgs Boson.
It had already been established that the particle discovered in 2012 matched the Higgs Boson with respect to its mass, its lack of spin, and its rapid decay into pairs of photons. However, one key attribute remained unconfirmed: whether it gave mass to fermions, a group of particles that includes quarks and leptons.
Analyzing data from the Large Hadron Collider, MIT physics professor Marcus Klute and a team of colleagues confirmed with a strong degree of confidence that the 2012 particle meets the final criteria.
“We made this big discovery back in 2012-we confirmed the particle, its [lack of] spin, everything was consistent,” says Klute. “What was missing were the fermions.”
But they are missing no more, thanks to the work of his team. “Our findings confirm the presence of the Standard Model Boson,” Klute says. “Establishing a property of the Standard Model is big news itself.”
The Higgs Boson was first theorized in 1964, and its monumental discovery was announced at CERN in 2012. The importance of the Higgs Boson to our understanding of particle physics is so great that it launched a 40 year search to prove its existence, which culminated in the construction of the LHC, the world’s largest particle accelerator. Mainstream media refer to the boson as the “God particle,” a name disliked by many physicists, including Higgs himself.