March 20, 2012

Quote of the day

From Daniel Whiteson, member of ATLAS and professor at the University of California at Irvine. “With the current data, a Standard Model Higgs at 125 GeV is like Mitt Romney: the most likely option, but the least exciting.”

I pulled this from Matt Strassler's excellent blog "Of Particular Significance," where he writes prolifically about the Higgs and other subatomic awesomeness. This week he's reporting from the SEARCH (SUSY, Exotics, And Reaction to Confronting the Higgs) Workshop on the LHC, where a dizzying slate of topics are being discussed by (mostly experimental) physicists. Supersymmetry, the hierarchy problem, dark energy and tons of other stuff are all theoretically implicated in the data pouring from ATLAS and CMS. An SM Higgs could feasibly be just one of many revolutionary discoveries--and at 125 GeV, apparently a boring one. ("The particle decays are the right height." OK, that's a terrible joke. Hey, it's spring outside!)

Anyway, read Strassler's blog, and decide for yourself whether you'd settle for the SM Higgs or hope for something less predictable. (And keep an eye out for possible video from his lecture at the Secret Science Club last week!)

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