The Higgs boson, ten years after its discovery

Press Release


Ten years ago, on July 4 2012, the ATLAS and CMS collaborations at the Large Hadron Collider announced the discovery of a new particle with features consistent with those of the Higgs boson predicted by the Standard Model of particle physics. The discovery was a landmark in the history of science and captured the world’s attention. One year later it won François Englert and Peter Higgs the Nobel Prize in Physics for their prediction made decades earlier, together with the late Robert Brout, of a new fundamental field, known as the Higgs field, that pervades the universe, manifests itself as the Higgs boson and gives mass to the elementary particles.

“The discovery of the Higgs boson was a monumental milestone in particle physics. It marked both the end of a decades-long journey of exploration and the beginning of a new era of studies of this very special particle,” says Fabiola Gianotti, CERN’s Director-General and the project leader (‘spokesperson’) of the ATLAS experiment at the time of the discovery. “I remember with emotion the day of the announcement, a day of immense joy for the worldwide particle physics community and for all the people who worked tirelessly over decades to make this discovery possible.”

In just ten years physicists have made tremendous steps forward in our understanding of the universe, not only confirming early on that the particle discovered in 2012 is indeed the Higgs boson but also allowing researchers to start building a picture of how the pervasive presence of a Higgs field throughout the universe was established a tenth of a billionth of a second after the Big Bang.

Source: CERN, Press Release