Higgs returns for CERN switch-on

Peter Higgs has returned to his working roots to mark the start of an experiment that may prove his theory.

Peter Higgs, Emeritus Professor of Physics

Birthplace of the Higgs boson theory

Professor Higgs is Emeritus Professor of Physics at the University.

His theory of the Higgs boson particle, a tiny yet crucial building block of physical matter, has dominated the world of particle physics for 40 years.

It was while working at the University in the 1960s that he began to formulate the theory.

CERN LHC particle accelerator

Prof Higgs gave a press briefing at his former workplace to mark the switch-on of the LHC particle accelerator at the European Centre for Particle Physics (CERN) in Switzerland.

The experiment aims to recreate the conditions that existed billionths of a second after the big bang, by smashing tiny particles together at almost the speed of light.

The results from the LHC may verify the existence of the Higgs boson particle.

Its discovery would fill a huge gap in the so-called Standard Model of particle physics.

Holyrood meeting

Professor Higgs later attended a private briefing with Fiona Hyslop, cabinet secretary for education and lifelong learning, at the Scottish Parliament.

Also present at the meeting was chief scientific advisor, Professor Anne Glover.