by Lidiya SMIRNOVA, Dr. Sc. (Phys. & Math.), Professor of the Physics Department, Lomonosov Moscow State University, senior research scientist of the Skobeltsyn Institute of Nuclear Physics The first cycle of the operation of a particle accelerator known as the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is coming to a close. The preparatory stage of this project took over twenty years, with unique particle detectors developed. The dramatic period of the collider's startup and the first results of measurements are now in the past. For more than three years LHC and the ATLAS, CMS, ALICE, LHCb* detectors operated on colliding beam lines of accelerated particles, and experimentalists collected information on what took place at superhigh energies of interacting particles. Next, new discoveries followed, and new particles and physical phenomena were discovered. The evidence thus obtained confirmed predictions of the Standard Model comprising a totality of modern concepts on elementary particles and their interactions. The opening of the International Conference on High-Energy Physics in July of 2012 in Melbourne (Australia) compelled great attention of all world information agencies. The statement of the European Laboratory of Elementary Particles (CERN**, Geneva, * See: L. Smirnova, "The 21st Century Megaproject", Science in Russia, No. 5, 2009; L. Smirnova, "Start of the Large Hadron Collider", Science in Russia, No. 5, 2010.--Ed. ** CERN, European Center for Nuclear Research.--Ed. Switzerland), where LHC is operating, on the detection of a new particle, the Higgs boson, the target of LHC search, was in the breaking news. Two major experiments at the ATLAS and CMS detectors registered simultaneously this particle's signal. Its mass is 126 GeV, and it is observed in several types of decay. The strongest signal is registered in those cases, when the particle decays into two photons. The signal occurs also in case of its decay into four light lept ... Read more

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