The fascinating recent discovery of the Higgs Boson, the latest fundamental subatomic particle found in nature, will provide the next discussion in the “World of Science” lecture series at Parkland College.
University of Illinois physics professor Dr. Mark Neubauer will present “Mind over Matter: Higgs Boson Discovery and
What it Means,” on Friday, October 5, from 7 to 8 p.m. at the William M. Staerkel Planetarium at Parkland’s campus. Tickets are $1 at the door with “Friends of the Staerkel Planetarium” admitted free of charge.
The elusive Higgs Boson was the last remaining particle to be found in the “Standard Model” of particle physics. The existence of this particle would imply the existence of the Higgs field, a mechanism by which other particles, including the proton and electron, acquire mass. In July of this year, evidence was produced by two independent teams that a new particle had been detected that was consistent with the Higgs Boson. Dr. Neubauer will shine some light on what a Higgs Boson is, how it fits into the Standard Model, and why we should care about such a profound discovery.
Dr. Neubauer has worked at the University of Illinois for the last five years. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 2001 and has performed postdoctoral research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of California at San Diego. His studies center on elementary particles and their interactions; his recent work to understand Nature at its most fundamental level involved the world’s most powerful particle collider, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland.
Following Dr. Neubauer’s talk, the planetarium will premiere the fulldome digital remake of its very first show, “Odyssey.” Information on planetarium shows may be found by calling the “show hotline” at 217/351-2446 or by consulting the planetarium web page at www.parkland.edu/planetarium. For more information on this talk, contact Dave Leake at 217/351-2567.