Peter Higgs, self-promoter

I was randomly rewatching The Big Bang Theory on Netflix today when I spotted this gem: Okay, maybe less a gem and more a shiny stone, but still. The screenshot, taken from the third episode of the sixth season, shows Sheldon Cooper mansplaining to Penny the work of Peter Higgs, whose name is most famously … Read more

Yoichiro Nambu, the silent revolutionary of particle physics, is dead

Yoichiro in Nambu in 2008. Source: University of Chicago

The Wire July 18, 2015 Particle physics is an obscure subject for most people but everyone sat up and took notice when the Large Hadron Collider discovered the particle named after Peter Higgs in 2012. The Higgs boson propelled his name to the front pages of newspapers that until then hadn’t bothered about the differences between bosons and … Read more

The Large Hadron Collider is back online, ready to shift from the “what” of reality to “why”

View of the LHC. Image: CERN

The world’s single largest science experiment will restart on March 23 after a two-year break. Scientists and administrators at the European Organization for Nuclear Research – known by its French acronym CERN – have announced the status of the agency’s upgrades on its Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and its readiness for a new phase of experiments running from now until 2018. … Read more

Gerald Guralnik (1936-2014)

Of the six scientists who came up with the idea of a Higgs boson in the mid-1960s, independently or in collaboration with others, I’ve met all of one. Tom Kibble was at the Institute of Mathematical Science, Chennai, in January 2013 for a conference. He was 80 years old then, and looked quite frail. Every time somebody … Read more

The non-Nobel for Satyen Bose

Last week, as the Nobel Prizes were announced and Peter Higgs and Francois Englert won the highly coveted physics prize, dust was kicked up in India – just as it was in July and then in September 2012 – about how Satyendra Nath Bose had been ‘ignored’. S.N. Bose, in the 1920s, was responsible for … Read more

Would you just calm down about the Bose in the boson?

July, 2012 – A Higgs boson-like entity is spotted at the Large Hadron Collider. Indians decry the lack of celebration of S.N. Bose, the Bengali physicist whom bosons are named for. January, 2013 – The particle found at the LHC is confirmed to be a Higgs boson. Further outcry about S.N. Bose having been forgotten in favor … Read more