A great discovery

Director Pier Oddone at a press conference in Melbourne.

The announcement on July 4th by CMS and ATLAS that they have discovered a new particle likely to be the long-sought Higgs boson has reverberated around the world. As well it should. It is of fundamental importance to our understanding of nature and it opens new paths towards a more complete understanding of the physical laws that rule our existence.

In this short column I want to congratulate CERN and the many collaborators around the world that have brought us this discovery. I want to congratulate and thank especially all the people at Fermilab who contributed to this discovery; the CMS collaboration members who have been involved in the analysis of the data; the scientists and staff members who support more than fifty US universities in their LHC participation; the many physicists, engineers and technicians who contributed to the building and operation of CMS; the computer specialists who have made the grid software successful; the folks who helped build the LHC’s final-focus magnets, the most complex in the accelerator; the specialists who contributed to the repair of the LHC after its rocky start; the administrators who have supported the many folks working on LHC for more than a decade, going back and forth to CERN; and especially all the collaborators at the Tevatron who pioneered many of the accelerator and detector technologies, triggering systems and analysis techniques that have contributed mightily to the success of the LHC.

Thank you and congratulations.