10-18 meters = 1 attometer

The Higgs Boson

The Higgs boson is a force particle, similar to the photon or gluon, that is predicted by the Standard Model. The special importance of the Higgs boson is that it is required by current theory in order to provide the characteristic masses of the elementary particles.

In 2011, the CMS and ATLAS detectors at CERN began to see evidence for a new particle based on the analysis of proton-proton collisions at an energy of 7 TeV, indicating a new particle with a mass around 125 GeV. The detectors were looking for specific decay patterns predicted by the Standard Model that would be the result of the decay of a Higgs boson.

On July 4th, 2012, both CERN experiments announced the discovery of a previously unknown boson with mass of ~125.5 GeV/c2. This announcement indicated a 1 in 3 million chance that the results were due to random events.

Ongoing experiments indicate that the newly discovered particle is consistent with the Higgs boson, with 0 spin and +1 parity, and with no charge or color charge. The latest data puts the mass of the Higgs at 125.09 ± 0.21 GeV/c2 and a predicted lifetime of 1.56 x 10-22 seconds.