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Unveiling the Mystery of Mass – Christoph Paus

Date: Thu. December 6th, 2012, 4:15 pm-5:15 pm
Location: Rockefeller 301

One of the prime reasons the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) was built is to resolve the question how particles acquire their mass. While it is very simple to measure particle masses, and we have a model (the Standard Model of Particle Physics) which explains quite accurately all presently available measurements, the seemingly trivial mechanism of how particle acquire their mass remains a mystery. The Standard Model invokes a new scalar gauge field to resolve this mystery, but we have until very recently not been able to find experimental evidence for its existence. On July 4, 2012, the CMS and ATLAS experiments announced the discovery of a new Higgs-like particle at a mass of about 125 GeV.

I will review our knowledge about the Higgs boson before the LHC started, quickly touch on the newest from the Tevatron, and discuss the discovery in this context. Finally, I will outline the steps required to complete the task and clearly identify the newly discovered particle as the Higgs boson.

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