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Final Analysis Suggests Tevatron Saw Hint of the Higgs Boson

Unknown Lamer posted more than 2 years ago | from the america-hates-science dept.

News 184

ananyo writes with exciting news from the world of particle physics: "A hint of the Higgs boson, the missing piece in the standard model of particle physics, has been found in data collected by the Tevatron, the now-shuttered U.S. particle collider at Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois. While not statistically significant enough in themselves to count as a 'discovery', the indications announced on 7 March at the Moriond conference in La Thuile, Italy, are consistent with 2011 reports of a possible standard model Higgs particle with a mass of around 125 GeV from experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN near Geneva, Switzerland. The data is more direct evidence of the Higgs than the constraints on its mass offered by the precise W boson mass measurement reported on Monday. On a sad note, the find vindicates Tevatron scientists who campaigned unsuccessfully to extend the collider's run. The request was turned down by the Department of Energy but this last hurrah suggests that Tevatron might indeed have found the Higgs ahead of CERN's Large Hadron Collider if they'd secured the funding required. The Tevatron is currently being raided for parts."

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You americans trying to take the glory again? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274649)

/me runs and hides.

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (2, Insightful)

Sez Zero (586611) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274917)

You americans trying to take the glory again?

What could be more American than that?

-- The Butler, Clue

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (-1, Troll)

x6060 (672364) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275099)

Easy, Actually doing it first and then watching the Euro Weenies whine about us Americans always getting the credit for our work.

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275183)

The sun is setting, your funding is cut. Enjoy withering to nothing.

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (-1, Troll)

x6060 (672364) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275249)

Hey, look everyone, its a Euro weenie trying to be dark, mysterious, and profound.

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275307)

How's that single currency thing working out for you all? Have you overheated the printing presses of soon to be worthless bonds yet?

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (-1, Flamebait)

Forty Two Tenfold (1134125) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276111)

Easy, actually doing it first and then watching the Europeans complain aboot us dumb USians always getting the credit for immigrants' work.

FTFY.

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (-1, Redundant)

x6060 (672364) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276249)

Uh huh, whatever you say chief.

I hope they don't find it (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275297)

Finding exactly what you expect is boring.

The interesting science arises when you observe something you did not expect.

Re:I hope they don't find it (1)

amRadioHed (463061) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276389)

Not finding the Higgs boson wouldn't be terribly interesting, that would just leave us where we started. But yeah, finding some other totally unexpected particle would be interesting for sure.

Re:You americans trying to take the glory again? (2)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275783)

You americans trying to take the glory again?

What could be more American than that?

-- The Butler, Clue

Shooting the Higgs boson for trespassing on your particle detector chamber?

WoW (1)

t0rb3n (1820822) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274653)

LfG Tevatron

Re:WoW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274883)

Lf1M Large Hard-mode Collider

Shit happens (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274665)

:)

Re:Shit happens (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274853)

...said one higgs boson approaching another in the Tevatron.

Wake me when it is statistically significant (0, Offtopic)

flagg9483 (940242) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274673)

Yeah, and I saw a hint of Jesus on my toast this morning. Now can I get a 2 Billion dollar advance on my breakfast funding to continue the research?

Re:Wake me when it is statistically significant (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274799)

No, the private market has already put forth a more cost-effective bid [blogs.com] . ($39.95)

Re:Wake me when it is statistically significant (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275241)

Now if I can find away to swap it's case with my friends toaster case. heh.

Re:Wake me when it is statistically significant (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275659)

No, you have to crowdsource funds these days.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/852445514/grilled-cheesus?ref=live

I LOVE the Tevatron (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274677)

It's my favorite ride at the fair!

Re:I LOVE the Tevatron (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275825)

It's my favorite ride at the fair!

But the radiation makes me ill.

sign of the times (2)

phrostie (121428) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274689)

shutting things down right when they can make the most difference.

it sucks, but when you don't have the money to maintain them,,,,.
at least the shuttles are going to museums.

Re:sign of the times (-1, Troll)

aXis100 (690904) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274829)

Oh yeah. It's amasing how much stuff they find when their funding is up for review. Surely that is just a coincidence....

Re:sign of the times (4, Insightful)

jo_ham (604554) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275981)

Well, this was found long after the funding was gone and the Tevatron was being taken apart for other experiments, but you go on insinuating that they're simply lying.

Re:sign of the times (1)

Brannoncyll (894648) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276219)

Oh yeah. It's amasing how much stuff they find when their funding is up for review. Surely that is just a coincidence....

Not really, considering that they've already started cannibalising the machine for parts.

Re:sign of the times (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274845)

It could be stupider -- the DoD is cutting half-fleets, keeping all of the engineering costs, most of the maintenance costs, most of the sustainment costs, but losing combat capability. Let's buy half an F-22 fleet and keep the F-15C.

Re:sign of the times (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274973)

Really? Is finding proof of the Higgs Boson really the "most difference" that the Tevatron will have made during its long life?

Re:sign of the times (1)

AdrianKemp (1988748) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275605)

Yes.

Re:sign of the times (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39276385)

That would indicate to me that the Tevatron was a waste of money. At this point in time the Tevatron finding the Higgs Boson is going to make almost no difference, because if it exists then the LHC will find it.

Re:sign of the times (1)

chispito (1870390) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275751)

at least the shuttles are going to museums.

The Shuttles made the Hubble Space Telescope possible. That was, far and away, the most difference they could have made, and they did it in the 90s. We need something cheaper and more reliable now.

Re:sign of the times (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276267)

At the time it was shut down, it was far from sure that the higgs could be found with that accellerator to begin with.

In the meantime a much better tool became available, one could argue making the Tevatron obsolete - at least for that part of particle research. I'm European and I don't really care whether the current largerst collider is in US or EU. Nice to have it on our side of the ocean but that's it. And it's not as if US scientists are kept out or so, right?

Really? Now you're "boron" me lol. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274701)

Oh, science humor.

But seriously, let's hope they're investing the money they saved from awesome future technology into reality television. Shark Tank just isn't cutting it for me.

Re:Really? Now you're "boron" me lol. (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275037)

I've heard that the new season of Jersey Shore contains 8.6% more indecent exposure incidents and 5% more Guido fights.

Thank you... (4, Insightful)

wcrowe (94389) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274743)

...for not calling it the "God particle".

Re:Thank you... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275043)

Whenever you take a trip to Christchurch, New Zealand, do you tell people "I'm going to go visit 43 deg 31' S 172 deg 37' E"?

Re:Thank you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275077)

A better question is do you, every time you go to Disneylad, say you're visiting "Godsville"?

Re:Thank you... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275395)

Every time I travel to tokyo I tell people that I'm going to Godzillatown.

And who is this disneylad? Walt?

Re:Thank you... (1)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276413)

A better question is do you, every time you go to Disneylad, say you're visiting "Godsville"?

Wouldn't MAFIAAville (or "The Evil Kingdom (tm)") be more appropriate?

Re:Thank you... (4, Insightful)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275943)

Christchurch is a name, Higgs Boson is a name, "The God Particle" is a popular media nickname (and not really justified), and coordinates are a description.

Your analogy confuses these.

If the local newspapers started calling Christchuch, "The God city.", I would still call it Christchurch.

Re:Thank you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275481)

And thank you for calling it the "God particle".

Transform and Roll Out (2)

pcolaman (1208838) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274755)

Tevatron is on the loose, let's call in Optimus Prime!

What is a Higgs Bosom worth? (2)

3seas (184403) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274791)

http://www.physicscentral.com/buzz/blog/index.cfm?postid=2156439899482364662 [physicscentral.com]

And the better answer is:
The sum total of what it cost to find one.

Re:What is a Higgs Bosom worth? (4, Funny)

polyp2000 (444682) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274935)

A Higgs Bosom ? ... now thats gotta be a worth a look!

Bosom [google.co.uk]

N ...

Re:What is a Higgs Bosom worth? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275729)

I am not sure Peter Higgs's Bosom is worth a look, actually.

Re:What is a Higgs Bosom worth? (2)

Brannoncyll (894648) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276407)

A Higgs Bosom ? ... now thats gotta be a worth a look!

Bosom [google.co.uk]

N ...

Do you really want to see Higgs' [wikipedia.org] bosom? Well, whatever floats your boat.....

Re:What is a Higgs Bosom worth? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276291)

About $5,000 to $15,000 [yourplasti...yguide.com] , Ms. Higgs.

DoE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274797)

With your Government you don't need external enemies

MFG, omb, Zuerich

Why oh Why (1)

maroberts (15852) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274807)

Wasn't the reason the Tevatron closed down because it couldn't explore the energy range where the Higgs was supposed to exist?

Is 125GeV at the bottom of that range?

50 years ago... (5, Insightful)

drachenfyre (550754) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274851)

50 years ago the U.S. could put a man into space. Today it can't.
50 years ago the U.S. was at the forefront of particle physics. Today it isn't.
50 years ago the U.S. started development of 3 different spacecraft on 5 different man rated rockets over a 7 year span. Today it's 10 years just to develop one.
50 years ago the U.S. had a plane capable of traveling at Mach 3.35. Today it doesn't.

I seriously feel bad for the future country my kids will inherit. It doesn't seem like we're moving in the right direction on the science and technology front.

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274943)

Welp, U.S, still have troops all over the world, that isn't exactly cheap...

Re:50 years ago... (5, Insightful)

daem0n1x (748565) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274997)

But think positive. You have plenty of lawyers, bankers and preachers!

Re:50 years ago... (3, Insightful)

King_TJ (85913) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274999)

Well, 50 years ago, the U.S. could manufacture most of its own consumer electronics.
50 years ago, the Federal Reserve hadn't ordered the printing of anywhere near the amount of money they have today, either.

The reality is, yes, the United States is in a state of decline, after arguably having "peaked" somewhere in the 1950's or 60's. Today, you can't even buy a kid a model rocket or a chemistry set without someone limiting the sale or fretting that you might be a terrorist.

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275921)

I think it's a fascinating thought experiment to try to understand the reason for the decline in the United States. Is it a nationwide form of apathy? We have done mostly everything that is humanly possible, and discovered that nothing is different in the end. We are bored, no longer satisfied or impressed with the technological whiz-bangery. We live easy lives now, but are they meaningful lives? I would love to hear what others think.

Re:50 years ago... (2)

fragtag (2565329) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275005)

50 years ago the U.S. could put a man into space. Today it can't.
50 years ago the U.S. was at the forefront of particle physics. Today it isn't.
50 years ago the U.S. started development of 3 different spacecraft on 5 different man rated rockets over a 7 year span. Today it's 10 years just to develop one.
50 years ago the U.S. had a plane capable of traveling at Mach 3.35. Today it doesn't.

I seriously feel bad for the future country my kids will inherit. It doesn't seem like we're moving in the right direction on the science and technology front.

I completely agree. We need to spend more money developing science and math education courses that engage children when they are young. Its sad to me the number of kids who don't even attempt word problems because they are "too hard".

Re:50 years ago... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275051)

I feel bad for your kids because you think a good country is good at making things. Who cares about these things? Space is still empty, supersonic passenger transport is expensive and we have limited energy to so anyways. Why not strive for a country that has social equality and food for all? Why the nostalgia over what amounts to engineering stunts? None of these things are important to a life well lived.

You're pathetic, and I feel bad for your kids. I really do.

Re:50 years ago... (2)

jythie (914043) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275791)

Big talk for someone typing on a computer, which exists because of engineers striving and preforming 'engineering stunts'.

Re:50 years ago... (4, Insightful)

ifrag (984323) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275053)

And basically all that research and science was driven by the Cold War. Scientific research can't really justify the budget for this stuff based purely on potential for profit.

Re:50 years ago... (4, Interesting)

geckipede (1261408) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275299)

Mao once said that a communist nation would always be able to outmaneuvre a capitalist nation, because capitalism can only ever make moves that profit in the short term.

I think it's fair to guess that in his own mind, he was comparing some utopian ideal of communism vs. a straw man capitalism, but even so, he had a point.

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275603)

LOL. Read this:

http://www.sheilaomalley.com/?p=306

Capitalism demonstrably outmaneuvers a centrally-planned communist economy in everything, except perhaps mobilizing a large number of workers over a very short period of time. Millions/billions of people making independent economic decisions results in a very high success rate of "allocating scarce goods and resources." Mao (and Kruschev, and Yeltsin) could not (and in the case of China, in some cases STILL cannot) stock their grocery shelves properly.

Re:50 years ago... (3, Insightful)

jythie (914043) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275899)

As with all things, it is in the balance. A pure capitalist system and pure socialist one are equally dysfunctional, though pure capitalist ones actually do come out worse and historically are much less stable then their socialist counterparts. This is actually why we have so many examples of socialist countries in the world and very few capitalist ones, the socialist ones might not work well but they do work.. the capitalist ones tend to explode within a few decades or collapse into 3rd world expletive-holes.. or more commonly wealth quickly concentrates enough that a small group starts acting as a defacto economic planner anyway, so it decays into a hybrid system anyway.

Re:50 years ago... (3, Interesting)

u38cg (607297) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276363)

Well, it took China fifty years to recover from Mao's economic depradations, so possibly not the best authority to be quoting.

Re:50 years ago... (1)

jythie (914043) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275817)

Besides the cold war, it was also being fueled by the GI Bill which really gave us an explosion of skilled/educated workers who normally would not have been available to industry. Now however we are cutting back on such educational investment under the idea that the 'market' will somehow get the same results.

Re:50 years ago... (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276155)

War has always been a reason for mankind to invent stuff. Mostly better ways to destroy stuff but often tech trickles down from there to less deadly use. Even now the US military is doing a lot of research, e.g. when it comes to building faster / stealthier / unmanned / etc aircraft. That can only be good for advancing flight tech, and in return giving us safer, more comfortable and more efficient airliners. And so there is a lot more coming out of this strange desire to destroy.

Re:50 years ago... (5, Funny)

BornAgainSlakr (1007419) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275205)

If we had just lowered all taxes to zero and cut all job-killing regulations, we would have colonized the solar system 50 years ago instead of just putting a man in space.

If we had just lowered all taxes to zero and cut all job-killing regulations, we would have pwned particle physics so hard it would be taught to 4th graders today in private religious schools the way God intended.

If we had just lowered all taxes to zero and cut all job-killing regulations, you would be able to buy a spacecraft at your local Ford dealership in any of 40 different models, 5 different trim levels, and hundreds of different colors.

If we had just lowered all taxes to zero and cut all job-killing regulations, no one would care about Mach 3.35 except the hippies that own Prii today. Everyone else would be getting on with their lives commuting between the Earth and Mars in their Ford spacecraft at a quarter of the speed of light.

PS... NASA still has operating SR-71's, so we technically still have a plane capable of traveling at Mach 3.35. And, God only knows what the slow, Government-teat-sucking, mouth-breathing engineers have been able to cook up in the past 50 years. Maybe they have us up to Mach 4 now.

Re:50 years ago... (3, Insightful)

Jedi Alec (258881) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275271)

Me not being able to tell whether this is satire or honest opinion scares the crap out of me...

Re:50 years ago... (1)

BornAgainSlakr (1007419) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275283)

Me too.

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39276417)

It's obviously satire. Ford dealerships offering hundreds of different colours?

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275311)

If the Romans had done that, we'd be living like Star Trek with 400 year lifespans.

Re:50 years ago... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275293)

"50 years ago the U.S. could put a man into space. Today it can't."
and 60 years ago we couldn't. What;s tyiour point? It hasn't been a goal. If congress said 'Go to the moon' we would be there in less then 10 years.

"50 years ago the U.S. was at the forefront of particle physics. Today it isn't.
Because other countries are spending money and our competitive.

"50 years ago the U.S. started development of 3 different spacecraft on 5 different man rated rockets over a 7 year span."
because they had money and were told to develop a space program.

"50 years ago the U.S. had a plane capable of traveling at Mach 3.35. Today it doesn't.
this is just false.

While there is a need for concern, and for people like you to take action and be involved regularly, the issues you mention are a result of 'going backwards'.

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275585)

XB-70 Valkyrie: a monumentally impractical aircraft, I'll admit, but capable of Mach 3 around the time period indicated. I'm not sure where the .35 came from. Wikipedia suggests the highest speeds attained (and briefly) were around M3.1.

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275429)

U.S. is running out of German nad Jew emigrants

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275635)

That's because "emigrants" LEAVE a country. English, how does it work?

Re:50 years ago... (2)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275989)

Maybe that's why we're running out?

Re:50 years ago... (2)

hackertourist (2202674) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275777)

50 years ago the U.S. was at the forefront of particle physics. Today it isn't.

Today, being at the forefront of particle physics is beyond the means of any one country. Particle physicists left the nationalistic dickwaving behind and decided to collaborate on the biggest and most complicated piece of measuring equipment ever devised. This is progress.

Re:50 years ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39276115)

50 years ago tax rates were much much higher. Space programs cost money.

Good thing the Higgs will be confirmed at LHC (5, Insightful)

ganv (881057) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274889)

If the US had extended funding for the Tevatron, the accomplishment of finding the Higgs as the Tevatron neared retirement would have been nice for American high energy physics, but it would likely have been bad for the field more broadly. Having the Higgs discovery near the beginning of data acquisition at the LHC will provide publicity and a morale boost that will enhance the productivity of the field over many years.

Re:Good thing the Higgs will be confirmed at LHC (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275055)

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Re:Good thing the Higgs will be confirmed at LHC (4, Interesting)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275393)

So
1. CERN finds some hints in where the Higgs is, ie around 125 GeV
2. Tevatron looks at their logs in the range ~125 GeV and says "well it could have been here, indeed"
3. Tevatron announces that they may have discovered the Higgs before, if ...

Questions:
1. What if CERN found at 110 GeV - maybe the Tevatron logs would show a similar indication?
2. I thought there was a matter of collider power/energy, and the Tevatron is not powerful for that discovery in the first place, anyway?

--
March 7, 2012 Not a good day for my karma

Re:Good thing the Higgs will be confirmed at LHC (1)

RogueLeaderX (845092) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275397)

While I agree with you that good press for the LHC is good for theoretical physics in general, I have to disagree that finding the Higgs at the Tevatron instead of the LHC would be bad for the field more broadly.

The assumption here appears to be that whichever site discovered the device first would have increased funding. So far as I know the LHC has funding (for now at least.) The Tevatron is lost to the world of theoretical physics. So, if finding the Higgs will extend the life of the Tevatron, that means more resources available in total for the physics community.

Or do you think there's only enough demand for high energy collisions to keep one collider in business?

Re:Good thing the Higgs will be confirmed at LHC (1)

ganv (881057) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275841)

I was assuming that they were going to shut down the Tevatron pretty soon in any case and the discussion was about whether to keep it going a little longer in hopes of finding the Higgs. It is important to keep multiple high energy experiments in business for competition and independent confirmation.

Urh Urh Urh! (4, Funny)

Ginger Unicorn (952287) | more than 2 years ago | (#39274895)

The Tevatron is currently being raided for parts

Now I have an image of it being pulled apart by a gang of Sandpeople

Re:Urh Urh Urh! (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275499)

The proper term is Muslim, racist.

Dissapointed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274959)

I was expecting that the Tevatron Saw would reveal what's inside the Higgs Boson.

Amazing how many people can find it now (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39274993)

After the Europeans showed everyone where it is...

Even the American string theorists after 20 years of research are now making their first 'prediction' that it will be in the spot that the Europeans found it.

HTTP://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/?p=4262

Priorities (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275013)

Hey, the DOE had higher priorities than making fundamental discoveries in physics. There were windmills to build, now-bankrupt solar cell factories to fund, and doomed electric cars (think Volt) to subsidize. Obama made a lot of promises to major campaign donors in 2008 that he had to pay off. In comparison to that, of what significance is science, or the economy or our jobs.

You elect a Chicago machine politician, you get Chicago machine politics at the national level.

"Shuttered"??? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275153)

What happened to the word "closed"?

Re:"Shuttered"??? (2)

nitehawk214 (222219) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275437)

What happened to the word "closed"?

It was shuttered.

the search is a very intricate calculation (4, Insightful)

peter303 (12292) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275181)

First you have propose a decay scenario, several which exist for the Higgs. This scenario suggests what particle tracks will hit one of several hundred sub-detectors (several thousand in the LHC) for various angles and distances (lifetimes). And may have to be search for a wide set of rotations. Maybe only one per trillion collision events out of trillions recorded in petabytes of data. This is a multi-week supercomputer run for each scenario. An ambiguous result, the back to the drawing board, propose a new decay candidate and another calculation. Or as they plan do for half of every year, run the collider again to collect trillions more interesting collisions. Last years LHC proposed energy "bump" was only five contending events out of several trillion studied.

Re:the search is a very intricate calculation (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39276181)

Last years LHC proposed energy "bump" was only five contending events out of several trillion studied.

It's more than 5. For the ATLAS detector by itself, as of Dec 2011 [quantumdiaries.org] they had 89,760 probable Higgs events. (Whether or not they 'actually are' the Higgs remains to be seen of course.)

Your overall point about the low frequency of events is correct, though. Those 89k events are from 380 trillion proton-proton collisions, which translates to an efficiency of 2.4×10^(-10).

So what (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275369)

You and a bunch of others are looking to find a fugitive, Mr. Higgs. Mr. Higgs has blonde hair, blue eyes, weight 175, left-handed, has a small tattoo hidden under his armpit. Years ago, you were at a restaurant and noticed the patron sitting at the next table is left-handed. Some years later Higgs is captured, and verified by finding the small tattoo, so you announce that you actually found him first because you once saw a guy who was left-handed.

Higgs Boson? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275555)

It also saw Bigfoot, just for a second.

Parts? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39275643)

Parts for what? All the other active GeV range particle accelerators that the US is maggoty with?

Note for the America hating audience: (4, Insightful)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275765)

No one is saying the Tevatron discovered the Higgs, or that it 'beat' the LHC. They're saying that now that they know what they're looking for, they found HINTS of it in their data.

Fun Fact: People from all over the world worked at the Tevatron in Illinois. We should all be sad it's gone. Also, many Americans are now working at, and helping to fund the LHC.

It's sad that these projects that bring us together in peace, get treated as if they were sporting events or yet another political pissing match.

Disagreement from the field (5, Interesting)

krlynch (158571) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275785)

Shutting down the Tevatron with the turn-on of the LHC was the right move, from my perspective in the field. The Tevatron would NEVER have reached the magic 5sigma threshold for discovery confirmation, something the LHC will do easily if the Higgs is really near 125GeV. And running the Tevatron isn't free: it's tens of millions of dollars a year, and many hundreds of man-years of effort. This funding would have been essentially "lost", but more importantly, the lost man-years would have decimated many other projects that Fermilab and the high energy physics community considered much more valuable than an additional year or two of Tevatron running. It would also have delayed for years the development of new accelerator projects at Fermilab that are considered extremely high priority within the field. These issues are why the shutdown decision was taken in the first place. Tevatron was a great machine for thirty plus years. But time marches on, and we don't keep high cost infrastructure running based just on nostalgia....

Re:Disagreement from the field (1)

P-niiice (1703362) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275941)

I think a hint of the Higgs is a good way for the Tevatron to go out. Great machine it was, and produced so much good science.

In other words... They want money (0)

GreatBunzinni (642500) | more than 2 years ago | (#39275875)

In other words, the people behind that claim are desperately trying to put some pressure on politicians to get their hands on more money for their pet project, and shift the blame to politicians for not succeeding at their objective.

For the now-closed Tevatron, a demonstration of sensitivity to the Higgs can be seen as a kind of moral victory, says theorist Gordon Kane of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. In 2011, researchers at Fermilab argued for an extension to the machine's run, on the grounds that they might be able to obtain evidence for the Higgs if they had more time, but their proposal was turned down by the US Department of Energy.
This proves they could have found the Higgs themselves, if they'd had full funding,” says Kane.

And, yeah, it also sounds like they want to take the credit for LHC's future discoveries. Not nice.

As a particle phisicist who worked at Tevatron... (4, Insightful)

mu22le (766735) | more than 2 years ago | (#39276137)

(and on LHC too) let me call the conclusions of the article bullshit.

This last hurrah suggests that Tevatron might indeed have found the Higgs ahead of CERN's Large Hadron Collider if they'd secured the funding required.

It took Tevatron 10 years to accumulate as enough data to reach a 4 sigma result (let us not discuss the statistical details). It would have taken years to reach the 5 sigma level. On the other hand LHC has obtained in one year almost as much data as Tevatron in 10. By summer 2012 the amount of data recorded by LHC will be an impossible goal for Tevatron to accomplish. It just made no sense at all to keep the old machine on.

The sad thing is not that Tevatron has been shut down but that the USA government is not investing any money in using the Fermilab infrastructure for some awesome future project (I'd love to see them try a muon collider).

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