A decade of Physics World breakthroughs: 2012 – discovery of the Higgs boson at CERN - Astronomy and space – Physics World5 Dec 2019, 12:51 UTC
It was a long time coming. The existence of the Higgs boson was predicted in 1964, but the world had to wait until 2012 before it was discovered by physicists working on the ATLAS and CMS collaborations on the Large Hadron Collider at CERN.
So, what happened next?
The very next year, François Englert and Peter Higgs shared the Nobel Prize for Physics for their theoretical prediction of the Higgs boson in 1964. While it was pretty certain that the 2013 Nobel would be related to the Higgs discovery, there was much talk in the run-up to the announcement that the Nobel committee would break with tradition of a maximum of three winners and give at least a portion of the prize to the CERN collaborations.
Earlier this year I spoke to Lars Brink who was chair of the committee that awarded the 2013 prize. He explained that the three-person-maximum per prize rule is unlikely to ever be broken because the committee does not want to create thousands of laureates – which would have happened if ATLAS and CMS had won the Nobel.
While I understand Brink’s sentiment, it is unfortunate that ATLAS and CMS missed ...