London: Experts have brushed aside speculation about a dramatic finding by a group of researchers at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) regarding a signal compatible with Higgs boson particle, calling it premature.However, a spokesman for Cern, which runs the LHC, confirmed the note was authentic, but cautioned that it could turn out to be a false alarm as it had not been held up to proper scientific scrutiny.
"What was leaked was the first stage in that process. At this stage we can``t take it seriously and these things do come and go quite often,” the BBC quoted Dr James Gillies, Director of communications, Cern as saying.
"It``s genuine, but what it comes from is a note written by a very small group of people in a large collaboration. There will be working groups for individual physics topics within those working groups and small teams of people will write notes for scrutiny by their colleagues. If those notes survive scrutiny, which is often not the case then the next stage in the peer review process is for them to go out to the collaboration as a whole. If they survive that then the collaboration will say ‘we``ve got something to go out to external peer review``," Gillies added.
The result under discussion has originated from four members of the Atlas collaboration. An Atlas is one of two "multi-purpose" experiments at the LHC, designed to search for the Higgs and some 3,000 physicists are working on the project.
The Atlas researchers targeted a mass region of 115 gigaelectronvolts (GeV), where Higgs candidates had previously been observed by the LHC``s predecessor, the Large Electron Positron (LEP) collider.
The researchers observed a so-called "resonance", an effect that can be associated with the presence of sub-atomic particles. But the number of events seen by them was about 30 times greater than expected.
First Published: Wednesday, April 27, 2011, 13:39