Higgs Boson & Relativity: A Layman's Explanation

In summary: Interesting, could you elaborate a little please? In summary, the Higgs Boson is related to relativity, it doesn't contradict it, and it associates with other particles to give them mass.
  • #1
Hello,

I am looking for a layman's description of how the Higgs Boson is related to relativity, I've searched the forum and google but can't seem to find an answer.

As I understand it the HB doesn't contradict the geometric interpretation of gravity (Spacetime bending and all that). So what I am curious about is how the boson actually does the "bending" and whether it works like the other force carriers or is some altogether different animal.

Thanks for any answers!

P.S. My guess is that the HB associates with other particles giving them mass and then via the Higgs Field influences (bends) spacetime itself. Is that along the right tracks?
 
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  • #2
The Higgs is part of the standard model of particle physics which is only consistent with special relativity (ie. relativity without gravity). There is only a partial low-energy theory of how general relativity ties in with the standard model, and people are still working on what should happen at high energies.
 
  • #3
atyy said:
The Higgs is part of the standard model of particle physics which is only consistent with special relativity (ie. relativity without gravity). There is only a partial low-energy theory of how general relativity ties in with the standard model, and people are still working on what should happen at high energies.

Interesting, could you elaborate a little please?

Could you give me the gist of how they think the standard model might tie into relativity then?

Also, if the HB was not introduced to tie relativity to the standard theory why is it needed? Why can mass not simply be a property of fundamental particles?

Thanks again
 
  • #4
As I recall, in a Yang-Mills gauge theory without Higgs or some other mechanism to take its place, all particles must be massless in order for the theory to be renormalizable. The Higgs mechanism gives particles mass while still allowing the theory to be renormalizable.
 
  • #5
Could you give me the gist of how they think the standard model might tie into relativity then?

Forces in the standard have been glued together in a unified framework...but gravity has NOT yet been reconciled with those forces...quantum gravity, quantum field theory and other approaches are making an attempt to make that unification...

For a nice visual representation, try reading Michio Kaku's HYPERSPACE ...under the Chapter EINSTEINS REVENGE, Dr Kaku lays out an N X N matrix...the upper left corner is Einsteins Gravity; Maxwell's equations are adjacent formulations in the same matrix..similarly he illustrates nuclear force,matter,etc in other blocks of the matrix...but the approach is illustrative, not mathematical and with a basic understanding of the components, it ties the pieces together very nicely...

PS: The Higgs boson and general relativity are not connected... or if they are nobody knows how...
The Higgs particle (or Higgs field) theoretically generates symmetry breaking and is therefore is origin of the mass of quarks...all particles with mass owe it to the theoretical Higgs particle...the graviton (the quantum manifestation of gravity) like the photon (the quantum manifestation of the electromagnetic field) has no mass...
 
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  • #6
Hmm ok, so the HB is pretty much for keeping particle physicists happy.

Then I assume string theory/loop gravity are the theories trying to bring in relativity... soo do they have anything to say on the higgs boson?
 

1. What is the Higgs Boson?

The Higgs Boson is a subatomic particle that is responsible for giving other particles their mass. It was first theorized in the 1960s and was finally discovered in 2012 by the Large Hadron Collider.

2. Why is the Higgs Boson important?

The discovery of the Higgs Boson helps to confirm the Standard Model of particle physics, which is the current theory that explains the fundamental building blocks of the universe. It also helps us understand how particles acquire mass, which is a crucial concept in understanding the structure of the universe.

3. What is relativity?

Relativity is a theory developed by Albert Einstein in the early 20th century that explains how gravity works and how objects in motion behave. It is based on two main principles: the principle of relativity, which states that the laws of physics are the same for all observers in uniform motion, and the principle of the constancy of the speed of light, which states that the speed of light is the same for all observers regardless of their relative motion.

4. How does relativity relate to the Higgs Boson?

Relativity and the Higgs Boson are both important concepts in understanding the fundamental structure of the universe. Relativity helps explain how gravity works on a large scale, while the Higgs Boson helps explain the origin of mass on a small scale. Both theories are crucial in our understanding of the universe and how it functions.

5. Can you explain the concept of mass in relation to the Higgs Boson and relativity?

According to the Standard Model of particle physics, particles acquire mass by interacting with the Higgs field, which is generated by the Higgs Boson. This interaction is what gives particles their mass. Relativity also plays a role in understanding mass, as it explains how energy and mass are equivalent and can be converted into each other. This concept is famously expressed in Einstein's famous equation, E=mc².

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