Solving the Mystery of the Higgs Field

In summary, according to Briane Greene's book, the Higgs ocean is a nonzero value field which if enough energy is put into it, will cause mass to no longer exist. If the field is raised to a zero value, then particles would no longer have mass and would travel at the speed of light. However, considering relativity, mass will still increase as the Higgs field gets weaker.
  • #1
Charlie G
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0
My understanding of the Higgs ocean comes from Briane Greene's The Fabric of the Cosmos. The book says that the Higgs field is a nonzero value field, and that if enough energy where put into it, enough to raise it to zero value, then mass would no longer exist since there would be no resistance between paricles and the Higgs field, and that all particles would travel at the speed of light.

So, if when I heat something up, giving energy to the Higgs field, then the Higgs field should be getting closer to a zero value and inertia should be decreasing. But if I take into account relativity then by heating the object up I am giving it energy, so its mass is increasing, therefore there should be more inertia when something is heated up. And at the temperature of electroweak unification, 1015degrees, then the particles shouldn't be zooming around at the speed of light, they should be heavily weighed down by there total mass.

Can anyone please clear this up to me?

Thanks.
 
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  • #2
No the heater the environment - the faster particles move.

Consider the Maxwell velocitiy distribution of particles, the more heat, the higher the mean value of kinetic energy -> the higher mean veolcity. The most common one are for non - relativistic kinematics, but it is very easy to derive it also for relativistic speeds, the result is different.

You are not giving particles mass, the 'increase of mass' is an effect of the particle moving faster. [tex] m = m_0/(\sqrt{1-(v/c)^2} ) [/tex]
 
  • #3
Glenn, I don't think he's talking about that. I think he's talking about the electroweak phase transition and why the Higgs field has a vev. The problem is that Greene's analogy is already stretched to the breaking point, and I am not sure how one can answer beyond that.
 
  • #4
Well I wasn't 100% sure what he asked about, so I cleared up at least one thing for him I hope. Let's see what he answer.
 
  • #5
Well, you did help somewhat, but my main problem is that I don't understand why heating an area of space up causes inertia to decrease. I think I understand Greene, he said that sometime after the big bang the temperatures where hot enough to raise the Higgs field to a zero value, so that particles with mass, like the W and Z bosons, became massless becuase they were faced with no resistance to accelerations posed by the Higgs field.

But at such high temperatures, say right between nonzero value and zero value for the Higgs field, shouldn't those particles have enough energy that there mass has a noticeable increase using m=E/c2, so there inertia should increase with temperature, not decrease.

According to Briane Greene, when energy is added to our nonzero Higgs field, it actually gets closer to a zero value. So as the field gets weaker shouldn't the particles that interact with the Higgs field start losing mass becuase they are being faced with less resistance? But by adding energy I increase mass and inertia, right?
 
  • #6
What you can think of (this is what comes into my mind).

The particles will loose their rest mass due to weaker interaction with higgsfield (higgsfield becomes weaker) thus they will be more photon-like. And photons do not have any inertia.

And the equation m=E/c^2 tells you that their relative mass becomes higher, not their real mass. So in total, the effect for the W and Z would be that they became massless when higgs is zero, thus behaving as photon-like particles.
 
  • #7
Oh, I didn't even think about treating the particles relativistic mass and its rest mass differently, it went right over my head.

Thx for the help Glenn:smile:
 

Related to Solving the Mystery of the Higgs Field

1. What is the Higgs Field and why is it important?

The Higgs Field is a theoretical concept in particle physics that is thought to give particles their mass through the Higgs mechanism. It is important because it helps us understand how the universe works on a fundamental level and provides insight into the origins of mass and the structure of matter.

2. How was the existence of the Higgs Field first proposed?

The existence of the Higgs Field was first proposed by physicist Peter Higgs in the 1960s as a way to explain why particles have mass. This proposal was later confirmed by the discovery of the Higgs boson particle in 2012 at the Large Hadron Collider.

3. How does the Higgs Field interact with particles?

The Higgs Field interacts with particles by giving them mass through the Higgs mechanism. This process involves particles interacting with the Higgs Field and acquiring mass as a result. Without this interaction, particles would not have mass and the universe would be very different from what we observe.

4. What techniques are used to study the Higgs Field?

Scientists use a variety of techniques to study the Higgs Field, including experiments at particle accelerators like the Large Hadron Collider, theoretical calculations, and data analysis. These techniques allow us to understand the properties and behavior of the Higgs Field and its role in the universe.

5. How does the discovery of the Higgs Field impact our understanding of the universe?

The discovery of the Higgs Field has greatly impacted our understanding of the universe by providing a crucial piece of the puzzle in the Standard Model of particle physics. It has also opened up new avenues for research and could potentially lead to the discovery of new particles and new physics beyond the Standard Model.

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