God Particle and Contribution of Indian Scientists


TNI Bureau: While world is curious about the discovery of Higgs Boson or God Particle, India would come frontline as its scientists’ contribution to the project is significant.

The Higgs Boson (often referred as God particle) is creating a buzz these days after scientists came up with a discovery of a new elementary sub-atomic particle, which is believed to be a key to the formation of stars, planets and life after the Big Bang 13.7 billion years ago.

India has a close link with the project as 100 Indian researchers were involved in collecting and analysing the data disclosed at European Organisation for Nuclear research, known as CERN, on Wednesday.

A dozens of researchers including Sudeshna Banerjee, one of the physicists of Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, Satyaki Bhattacharaya from Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics (SINP) in Kolkata, are still at the CERN laboratory in Geneva. They have contributed to the project by anlysing data till last week of June.

India also takes the credit for the legendary physicist Satyendra Nath Bose- after whom the particle gets the latter part of its name (Boson). Bose, whose study changed the way, Particle Physics has been studied ever since. He was the part of the golden troika of Indian physicists (that included CV Raman and Meghnad Saha) whose works have been highly appreciated in the study of fundamental physics.

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Bose was the only student at Presidency College, Calcutta, who had secured the highest marks in all the disciplines. Legendary scientist Meghnad Saha was his classmate.

His biggest contribution to Particle Physics came in the form of a study that he sought to present before his students at Dhaka to show them that contemporary theory was not in accordance with results gathered from experiments. During this lecture, Bose committed a ‘mistake’ in applying the theory, which unexpectedly gave a prediction that agreed with the experiment. But the ‘error’ was a statistical one and not an experimental one.

Bose’s ‘mistake’ is today what the world calls Bose–Einstein statistics. That mistake by Bose laid the foundation of quantum statistics, as acknowledged by Einstein and Paul Dirac.

India started contributing to the research in 1996 when the department of atomic energy signed a protocol with CERN for the hadron collider project– world’s largest atom project, which was on the hunt for the Higgs Boson or God Particle.

Later, a team from Bhabha Atomic Research Centre participated in developing the “grid computing systems” used in analysing loads of data generated by the experiment.

Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics (SINP) also takes pride for being a part of the history. The scientists have made significant contributions to the development of the CMS experiments at CERN. The core CMS team of the SINP included group leader Prof Sunanda Banerjee, Prof Satyaki Bhattacharya, Prof Suchandra Datta, Prof Subir Sarkar and Prof Manoj Saran.

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