Press Esc to close
Friday 27 February 2015
News updated at 2:47 AM IST
Weather
Max: 31.7°C
Min : 16.9°C
In Bengaluru
clear sky

'God Particle' in focus as Nobel season kicks off

Stockholm, Oct 7, 2013 (AFP):
An example of simulated data modeled for the CMS particle detector on the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN. Here, following a collision of two protons, a Higgs boson is produced which decays into two jets of hadrons and two electrons. The lines represent the possible paths of particles produced by the proton-proton collision in the detector while the energy these particles deposit is shown in blue.

The Nobel season kicks off today amid expectations that the physics prize will honour the discovery of the "God Particle", while a Pakistani girl who was shot and nearly killed by the Taliban could receive the peace prize.

The breadth of the field of candidates exemplifies how the Nobel Prize, seen by many as the planet's most prestigious award, recognises both intellectual struggle with the fundamental riddles of nature -- and real battle against violations of basic human rights.

But it is the award for groundbreaking medical research that will be the focus of attention today at about 1500 IST, when Goeran K. Hansson, secretary of the Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine, steps in front of the cameras at Stockholm's Karolinska Institute to announce this year's winners.

Only tomorrow will it be clear if predictions are correct and the discovery of the Higgs Boson - widely hailed as one of the greatest scientific achievements of the past century - gets the Nobel Prize for Physics.

Without the Higgs, say theorists, we and all the other joined-up atoms in the universe would not exist.

Despite this, there is some conjecture that the Higgs will miss out. Officially, there remains a remote possibility that the new particle discovered last year is not a Higgs but some other novel particle.

Awarding the prize for the Higgs also poses a conundrum for the Nobel Committee: Should theoreticians or practitioners -- or a hard-to-decide mixture of both -- be on the podium? And how to reward a breakthrough that took the efforts of thousands of individuals?

Maria Gunther Axelsson, science editor at Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter, predicted that the prize would probably go some way towards recognising the collective nature of the effort that was behind the breakthrough.

"Francois Englert (from Belgium) is an obvious choice since he, along with Robert Brout, who died in 2011, was first to publish the theory behind the Higgs field," she wrote in the paper's Sunday edition.

"Fabiola Gianotti (of Italy) and Joseph Incandela (of the United States) will share the other half of the prize, because they were first to come up with the experimental results," she forecast.

A record 259 nominations have been submitted for this year's peace prize but the Norwegian Nobel Institute never discloses the list, leaving amateurs and experts alike to engage in a guessing game ahead of the October 11 announcement.

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teen who survived a shot to the head last year by the Taliban for championing girls' education, tops the list at bookmaker Paddy Power with odds 2-to-1.


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Students march and light flares during the second day of student strike in Madrid, Spain...

Students march and light flares during the second day of student strike in Madrid, Spain...

Indian Weightlifter Kailash Sarma and Modhusmrita Baruah displaying their gold medals...

Indian Weightlifter Kailash Sarma and Modhusmrita Baruah displaying their gold medals...

Bollywood actor Shatrughan Sinha and singer Sonu Nigam during the success party of the later's album

Bollywood actor Shatrughan Sinha and singer Sonu Nigam during the success party of the later's album

Church attack at Ullal, Mangalore...

Church attack at Ullal, Mangalore...

The Solar Impulse 2, a solar-powered plane, flies over the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi...

The Solar Impulse 2, a solar-powered plane, flies over the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi...

Abihimanyu Mithun during a Ranji Trophy Semi-final match at KSCA in Bengaluru...

Abihimanyu Mithun during a Ranji Trophy Semi-final match at KSCA in Bengaluru...

An Indian ragpicker waits for a train to pass by as he tries to cross railway tracks in New Delhi...

An Indian ragpicker waits for a train to pass by as he tries to cross railway tracks in New Delhi...

People travel at the doorway of a crowded local train on the outskirts of Kolkata, India...

People travel at the doorway of a crowded local train on the outskirts of Kolkata, India...

An Indian passenger sits on the lap of another man as he travels in a crowded local train...

An Indian passenger sits on the lap of another man as he travels in a crowded local train...

.Indian passengers hang from the doors of the coaches of a crowded local train...

.Indian passengers hang from the doors of the coaches of a crowded local train...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523