Now, physicists at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) on the Swiss-French border are resuming the conflict. With the aim of increasing understanding of the Higgs boson and other subatomic particles, and the mysteries of dark matter – matter that is invisible and elusive because it does not absorb, reflect or emit any light.
With a ring measuring 27 kilometers (16.7 miles) in circumference, the Large Hadron Collider – located deep in the Alps – is made of superconducting magnets cooled to -271.3 °C (-456 °F), which is colder than space. It works by cracking small molecules together, allowing scientists to track them and see what’s inside.
“When we do research, we hope to find something unexpected and surprising. This will be the best result. But of course the answer is in the hands of nature, and it depends on how nature answers the open questions of fundamental physics.” CERN general manager Fabiola Gianotti said in a video posted on the CERN website.
“We are looking for answers to why the Higgs boson is so light and to many other open questions about dark matter.”
Understanding the Higgs boson
Physicists François Englert and Peter Higgs first theorized the existence of the Higgs boson in the 1960s. The Standard Model of Physics lays the foundations for how the fundamental forces and particles in the universe interact. But this theory fails to explain how particles actually gain mass. Particles or parts of matter range in size and can be larger or smaller than atoms. Electrons, protons, and neutrons, for example, are the subatomic particles that make up the atom. Now scientists The Higgs boson is thought to be the particle that gives all matter its mass.
In the final round of experiments, scientists at CERN will study the material’s properties under extreme temperatures and density, and look for explanations. For dark matter and other new phenomena, either through direct searches or – indirectly – through precise measurements of known particle properties.
Dark matter is believed to make up most of the matter It was previously discovered through its ability to cause gravitational distortions in the universe and space.
“The Higgs boson may indicate new phenomena, including some responsible for dark matter in the universe,” said Luca Mulshiri, a spokesperson for CMS (Compact Muon Solenoid), one of the four experiments of the Large Hadron Collider. It is built around a large electromagnet.
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