For the last few days there has been a big buzz in the media about the discovery of the ever elusive and long sought after ‘God Particle’. Not many of us know what the ‘God Particle’ is, what it does, or where its importance comes from. As an enthusiast of the ‘God Particle’, I decided to explain what all this buzz is about in few simple words.
In the early twentieth century, scientists managed to explore the components of the atom. They were shocked to find that most of the atom is actually space. There was a nucleus and around it revolved electrons each in its own separate orbit, and they noticed that this was just like the sun and the planets. Later on they discovered that even galaxies have their own orbits. The question that imposed itself was ‘What is all this space for?’ Particle physicists were baffled by this question. They could not understand how on one had there was a vacuum inside the atom, and on the other hand this vacuum did not lead the atom to crunch upon itself.
Peter Higgs wrote his theory on the issue in 1964 explaining hypothetically how such a space comes to exist and the kind of particle that shapes its characteristics. The particle was named after him ‘Higgs boson’ and was nicknamed as the God Particle because of its mysteriousness and power. Since then scientists have been experimenting to find it and explore it. This proved very troublesome as it is very big and decays almost immediately after its existence, and only high energy particle accelerators can manage to record the process. With modern technology such particle accelerators were built which helped accelerate the research leading to the current discovery of the ‘God Particle’.
The discovery of the ‘God Particle’ is very important as this will open the door to exploring why beings and objects are shaped the way they are, and what gives objects their masses. It will be amazing to come to terms with all the space in the universe, inside and outside the earth, and understand the reason for its existence.