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B Higgs field

  1. Jul 19, 2016 #1
    is the higgs field the same ever wair or does the field thicker and thinner in places like space-time?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 20, 2016 #2
    The Higgs field is a quantum field, not a mechanical entity, so concepts such as "thickness" do not make any sense in this context. All I can really say is that the vector bosons of the weak interaction have the same rest mass everywhere in spacetime, so in that sense the effect of the Higgs field is quite uniform.
  4. Jul 20, 2016 #3
    so if its the same everywhere why is it called a field witch would imply some different in the way it works
  5. Jul 20, 2016 #4
    Yes, it can be taken to be the same everywhere, in the sense that it manifests in the exact same manner no matter where you are.
  6. Jul 20, 2016 #5
    i know this maybe a way out there question but is the higgs field what prevents F.T.L. or has nothing to do with it?
  7. Jul 20, 2016 #6


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    It's not the Higgs boson that "prevents" FTL. It's the very fundamental structure of relativistic spacetime that does not allow causally connected events at space-like distances.

    In todays understanding of elementary particles the Higgs field is a scalar field with a non-vanishing vacuum expectation value (VEV). This Higgs mechanism provides the fundamental masses to the quarks and leptons as well as the massive gauge bosons (the ##Z^0##- and ##W^{\pm}## bosons) via their coupling to the Higgs field. The non-vanishing VEV leads to the mass terms for these fields without violating the underlying local gauge symmetry. Such symmetries are vital for the consistency of this kind of quantum field theory. If you break such a symmetry in any way, the entire model becomes useless, i.e., you cannot make any sense out of it. Now in addition to providing the fundamental masses to the elementary constituents of matter, as with any other physical field in a QFT it also corresponds to a particle. The quantum excitations of the Higgs field appear as scalar particles, the famous Higgs boson. It is the final building block of the Standard Model, observed by the ATLAS and CMS collaboration at the Large Hardon Collider at CERN in 2012.

    One should, however, be aware that about 98% of the mass of the matter surrounding is is NOT due to the Higgs mechanism but dynamically generated by the strong interaction, but that's another (not yet fully understood) topic.
  8. Jul 20, 2016 #7
    ok can you dum that down a bit i have no idea what the letters mean but i would not mind learning
  9. Jul 21, 2016 #8
    Is the @op asking whether the Higgs field is constant? It's certainly not. The Higgs bosons are ripples, excitations of the Higgs field, so it must be varying.

    However, the average value of the Higgs field over some volume large enough will be the same everywhere. So Higgs field may be seen as constant background + relatively small ripples of zero mean value.

    The mean value of Higgs field can change though, and the inflation epoch might have been such an event.
  10. Jul 22, 2016 #9
    thank you for tacking the time to explane it to me :smile: is there a way at all to lessen the affects of the flied ?
  11. Jul 23, 2016 #10
    So you want to cancel the Higgs field :).

    Well, since we know Higgs field can change value, so there must be some way to change it. Just heat the universe to the temperature comparable to Big Bang and we're done.

    More realistically, maybe there exist some materials or conditions where the value of the Higgs field is effectively altered. Just as electromagnetic field symmetry is spontaneously broken in semiconductors, there might be similar phenomenon for Higgs field. But we don't know of any such process yet.
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