Fermilab and the Higgs Boson

The Higgs boson is a particle associated with the Higgs field, the mechanism through which elementary particles gain mass. Without the Higgs field, or something similar, atoms would not form, and there would be no chemistry, no biology and no life.

Physicists first formed the theory of the Higgs field in the 1960s and predicted the existence of the Higgs boson in 1964. On July 4, 2012, scientists on two international experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN laboratory announced the discovery of the Higgs boson by combining signals seen in different types of decays of the discovered boson.

The discovery was the culmination of nearly five decades of work by thousands of physicists and engineers, and included research at the LHC, Fermilab's Tevatron accelerator and CERN's Large Electron-Positron Collider.

Fermilab scientists have played a significant role in the many steps that led to finding the elusive particle, from working out new ideas and models in the theory department; to building and running experiments at the Tevatron which provided evidence for Higgs boson production; to participating in the construction and running of the CMS experiment at CERN which led to the LHC discovery; to providing computing power and intellectual leadership in data analysis at CMS.

America's Role in the Higgs Discovery