Texas A&M University physicist Roland E. Allen has written a comprehensive review of the Higgs boson that explains the significance of this elusive particle, its recent experimental discovery and the Nobel Prize-winning proposal for its existence nearly half a century ago.

Allen's paper, "The Higgs Bridge," was published Monday (Dec. 9) by the international journal Physica Scripta in tandem with a special topical issue entitled "Nobel Symposium 154: Physics of the Large Hadron Collider." The celebratory edition, stimulated by the Higgs discovery announced July 4, 2012, is timed to commemorate Nobel Prize Week events underway since last Friday in Stockholm and culminating in the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony and Nobel Banquet celebrating this year's Nobel laureates on Tuesday (Dec. 10).

Physica Scripta, which is published by the Institute of Physics (IOP) on behalf of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, occasionally publishes tutorial papers that are meant to bridge gaps in readers' knowledge and to provide insight into problems, methods and results in different areas of physics. Allen's is intended as an accessible overview and comprehensive teaching tool for undergraduate students and lecturers across a broad spectrum beyond physics who are interested in the physics behind the Higgs boson, from how it affects the Standard Model to how it could impact our future understanding of the universe.

"'The Higgs Bridge' connects the Higgs boson to both future discoveries and essentially the rest of physics and astronomy -- nuclear, condensed matter, atomic and quantum optics, cosmology and astrophysics," Allen said. "In addition to overlapping all five areas in the Texas A&M Department of Physics and Astronomy, it also touches on several international experiments in which Texas A&M researchers are major participants and includes figures from CMS at the Large Hadron Collider and the AMS [Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer], CDMS [Condensed Dark Matter Search] and LUX [Large Underground Xenon] experiments."

Allen, a theoretical physicist at Texas A&M since 1970, is well-respected for his teaching, having received the Texas A&M Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching at both the college (2003) and university levels (2004). He also is the author of more than 200 scholarly publications on a wide variety of subjects and has organized numerous related conferences and symposia.

Allen's paper is available online at http://iopscience.iop.org/1402-4896/89/1 and also is featured in the introduction to the LHC Nobel Symposium Proceedings (top of Page 2) at http://iopscience.iop.org/1402-4896/2013/T158.

To learn more about Allen and his teaching, research and professional service, visit http://people.physics.tamu.edu/allen/.

For additional information on the Higgs boson discovery and Texas A&M's role in advancing both the theory and the experiments that proved its existence, go to http://www.science.tamu.edu/articles/1125/.

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Contact: Shana K. Hutchins, (979) 862-1237 or shutchins@science.tamu.edu or Dr. Roland E. Allen, (979) 845-4341 or allen@tamu.edu

Hutchins Shana

  • Puzzle Inside the Puzzle

    Although the Higgs particle, H, completes the Standard Model of particle physics that describes building blocks of the universe, it is not believed to be the final piece in the greater cosmic puzzle. (Credit: Nobel Foundation.)

  • Roland E. Allen

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