When the big bang occurred there was allegedly an equal amount of matter and antimatter. As you may know, when matter and antimatter come in contact they consume and destroy each other. This being true, how could life or the universe for that matter exist if at its creation it should have annihilated itself? The answer is attempting to be explained by experiments using the Large Hadron Collider located at a depth 574 feet below the earth’s surface with a 17-mile diameter, near Geneva, Switzerland.
This machine is the largest and most powerful particle accelerator in the world, which as its name may suggest, slams different types of particles into each other at high speeds. These particles are mostly protons with 1.2 microjoules (a measurement of energy) or lead particles at 574 teraelectronvolt (another measurement of energy). What’s the point of these experiments? The collider’s purpose is to study high-energy physics, and hopefully find the Higgs boson if it exists, along with particles suggested by supersymmetry (in particle physics this relates to particles of one spin and particles with a ½ spin).
The Higgs boson has mistakenly been called the “God Particle” by the media in response to the book, “The God Particle: If the Universe Is the Answer, What Is the Question?” by Leon Lederman. However, the scientific community detested this term, and having a competition for a new nickname, the particle was dubbed “the champagne bottle boson”.
Back to the point, scientists at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) are currently searching for the Higgs Boson as it is theorized that this particle gives all matter mass, which means if it does exist it would account for everything in existence. Researchers believe at creation the amount of matter was in abundance by one percent more than antimatter, and this only makes sense if the hypothetical Higgs boson is a reality. You might say what is so difficult about finding this particle, but the reason is it has never been observed anywhere at any point in time.
This is the major problem with many quantum theories; they have a high improbability to be solved. Another example of this is that by scientific research the universe only makes sense, as in Theory of Relativity and every hypothesis in physics, if there are 10 dimensions. Right now we only know of four, the first being a line or curve, the second is a plane or surface, and the third dimension is where we exist. Keep in mind the fourth dimension is time, somewhat a hard idea to grasp. The 6 remaining dimensions are left to the imagination.
Researchers believe they can roughly calculate the Higgs boson’s mass by using extremely indirect methods. In its basic model, the particle has various byproducts, including, Higgs loops cause tiny corrections to masses of W and Z bosons. Exact assessments of electroweak factors, such as the constant and the masses of the W and Z bosons, can be manipulated to determine the mass of the Higgs.
It was announced in 2009 that the Higgs boson might not only just interact with matter, but also react ‘weakly interacting massive particles’ or WIMPs, that are contained in Dark Matter. This is incredibly important in modern astrophysics as dark matter has become the subject of mountains of research for a variety of reasons. Mainly some scientists have suggested dark matter can be harnessed to use as an energy source, and this idea has been used extensively by Hollywood in numerous films.