Peter Ware Higgs, FRS, FRSE, FKC (born 29 May 1929) is a British theoretical physicist and emeritus professor at the University of Edinburgh. He is best known for his 1960s proposal of broken symmetry in electroweak theory, explaining the origin of mass of elementary particles in general and of the W and Z bosons in particular. This so-called Higgs mechanism, which was proposed by several physicists besides Higgs at about the same time, predicts the existence of a new particle, the Higgs boson (often described as "the most sought-after particle in modern physics"). CERN announced on 4 July 2012 that they had experimentally established the existence of a Higgs-like boson, but further work is needed to analyse its properties and see if it has the properties expected from the Standard Model Higgs boson. The Higgs mechanism is generally accepted as an important ingredient in the Standard Model of particle physics, without which particles would have no mass. Higgs has been honoured with a number of awards in recognition of his work, including the 1997 Dirac Medal and Prize for outstanding contributions to theoretical physics from the Institute of Physics, the 1997 High Energy and Particle Physics Prize by the European Physical Society, the 2004 Wolf Prize in Physics, and the 2010 J. J. Sakurai Prize for Theoretical Particle Physics.
July 04th, 2012