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Higgs/vacuum stability and the universe

  1. Mar 26, 2013 #1
    A new article in Sciam discusses a possible fate of the unvierse:
    I know there has been some discussion of this since the Higgs mass (and it looks more and mroe like a standard model Higgs apparently) was measured at the lHC. Im wondiering if there was such a transition could it go to another metastable state and if so might it have already done so in the past? Or would any tunneling have to end up in a stable rather than metastable state?
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 27, 2013 #2


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    It would just have to end up in a lower-energy state. If it did, then a bubble would basically expand outward at very near the speed of light from the location where the transition first occurred. This means that if this occurred in the past, we'll have almost no warning before it hits us. Some person glancing through a distant object in a telescope in the right direction might notice that object disappearing (or exploding...not sure which) a few milliseconds before he ceases to exist, but beyond that we'd have no warning. We'd just be gone.

    Perhaps of some level of comfort is the fact that due to the accelerated expansion, events from less and less of the universe can ever reach us. That is to say, most of the galaxies we can see today are now beyond our horizon, so that even if this sort of event happened on one of them today, the vacuum collapse would never reach us.
  4. Mar 27, 2013 #3


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    A monitoring programme should be instituted immediately! There is not a femtosecond to lose!
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