Scientists around the globe are excited at the news that the world's biggest atom smasher may confirm hints of an entirely new particle.
In December, two separate Large Hadron Collider (LHC) detectors turned up faint signs that could indicate the presence of a new particle. The preliminary readings turned up by the LHC's Atlas and Compact Muon Solenoid particle detectors suggested that at 750 Giga electron Volts might exist a particle not accounted for by the Standard Model.
CERN officials said that this mystery particle would be the most massive particle in the model, nearly six times more massive than the Higgs and four times more massive than the top quark. Since then, scientists have been theorizing about the significance of this potential discovery. According to The New York Times, experts consider that such a discovery would dramatically affect the most basic understanding of physics.
Theoretical physicist Csaba Csaki said that this is a hint at a possible discovery, and if it proves to be, true it would possibly be the most exciting thing he has seen in his entire career. According to him, this discovery would be even "more exciting than the discovery of the Higgs itself."
The LHC reopened on March 25, after a wintertime break. CERN scientists prepare the machine for a restart in early May. Currently, they are scrubbing clean the pipes and performing safety tests before the experiments will start again to slam large bundles of particles together in hopes of producing enough data to clear up that mystery.
In the meantime, according to NH Voice, CERN's Large Hadron Collider temporarily came to a standstill on Friday, April 29, due to a small weasel. The small creature went through a power cable and invaded a transformer that helps powering the machine.
The incident has led to an electric short circuit that caused the shutdown of the 17-mile long particle smasher due to power failure. CERN said that this was one of a few small glitches that will delay plans to start the data collection by a few days.