In a ‘quantum’ leap in physics, CERN scientists on claimed to have spotted a sub-atomic particle “consistent” with the Higgs boson or ‘God particle’, believed to be a crucial building block that led to the formation of the universe.
There is an intrinsic Indian connection to what is happening at CERN – Satyendra Nath Bose. It is Bose after whom the sub-atomic particle ‘boson’ is named.
His study changed the way Particle Physics has been studied ever since. The Higgs Boson is a particle that is theoretically the reason why all matter in the Universe has mass.
The name Higgs Boson came from a British scientist Peter Higgs and Bose. The work done by Bose and Albert Einstein, later added by Higgs, lead to this pioneering day.
At the core of the CERN, spread over two countries as it is situated near the Swiss-Franco border, is the 27-km long tunnel, over 70 metres beneath the ground, where the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) or commonly referred to as the Big Bang experiment was conducted last year.
The experiment had aimed to recreate the conditions of the Big Bang, when the universe is thought to have exploded into existence about 14 billion years ago.
The CERN runs a number of experimental projects and over 100 Indian scientists are working round the clock.
Bose was born in Calcutta in 1894, and served as a lecturer at the universities of Dhaka and Calcutta.
At the age of 30, Bose was instrumental in a key statistical discovery, along with none other than Albert Einstein himself. He sent a paper to Einstein describing a statistical model that led to the discovery of what would later be called the Bose-Einstein condensate phenomenon. The paper described the two fundamental classes of sub-atomic particles — bosons, named after Bose, and fermions, after the Italian physicist Enrico Fermi.
While several Nobel prizes have been awarded to research related to the concepts of the boson, Bose himself was never honoured. In 1954, the Indian government conferred Bose with the Padma Vibhushan