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Discovery of the Higgs boson a key to open the mysteries of the universe

Wednesday, July 4th 2012 - 22:39 UTC
Full article 6 comments

Scientists at Europe's CERN research centre have found a new subatomic particle, a basic building block of the universe, which appears to be the boson imagined and named half a century ago by theoretical physicist Peter Higgs. Read full article


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  • cornishair

    hurrah science :) now can someone find a use for subatomic particles?

    Jul 05th, 2012 - 07:01 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Richfe

    @1 the Higg's bosun being the basis of all mass and energy in the universe could be considered a tiny little bit useful. Also since the electron is a subatomic particle one might consider that newfangled “electricity” to be a little bit useful...or the photons that carry the signals from my exchange to the server for mercopress over optical fibres...

    More seriously: the prediction of the Higg's Bosun was another fantastic scientific achievement by the UK's academics and universities, adding to a long list including the theories of gravity and optics, the theory of evolution, discovery of the structure of DNA, not to mention the numerous engineering breakthrough's from the steam engine to radar and the programmable computer. Great to see a joint European programme succeeding in finding the particle, surely an example international co-operation at it's best.

    To turn this back to Mercosur and the Americas: what are the joint scientific programmes similar to CERN that should be followed in this region? (serious question: no snide comments please)

    Jul 05th, 2012 - 08:22 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • cornishair

    2 Richfe :) lol ok. I should of said anyone know any uses for the Higgs boson, apart from answering the whole Standard model of particle physics.

    It is weird how much this country adds to scientific research & engineering.

    Jul 05th, 2012 - 08:58 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Richfe

    @3 Not weird: the result of an interesting combination of culture and institutions that produces results. Add together meritocracy, cultural willingness to challenge authority/orthodoxy, a work ethic and a strongly empirical approach to even theoretical science and you get results in the UK, US and northern Europe more generally. Add to that the international, cosmopolitan and interdisciplinary nature of UK universities and you get progress.

    We just need to keep up the hard work and get better at commercialisation!

    Jul 05th, 2012 - 09:26 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • cornishair

    4. true we do seem to be pretty crap at selling what we come up with. Penicillin being a good example, as far as i know the british team thought it would be good to give it to the world & then the americas patented it.

    It will be intresting to see to see if China can invent new technology's, because at the moment all they are doing is copying western designs. Enforcing Intellectual property rights seems to be a big problem.

    Jul 05th, 2012 - 09:41 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Richfe

    @5 We aren't too terrible, just not as good as the USA...also UK tech companies tend to sell out rather than grow to multinational size. This is still a viable long as we encourage start-ups and ensure we have a good base of engineers/scientists coming through our universities and into industry.

    Chinese engineers I've worked with have been strong, if slightly unsure about challenging authority. This is changing though, as a result of exposure to international working practices and overseas education. Even without revolutionary invention, if they follow the Japanese model of evolutionary improvement it will make it hard work for the rest of us! IPR is a problem...but to be honest no more so than in some EU countries.

    Jul 05th, 2012 - 04:27 pm - Link - Report abuse 0

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