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Data 'strongly indicates' Higgs boson was found


This image shows proton collisions from the Large Hadron Collider's CMS experiment. Four high-energy electrons (green lines and red towers) are visible. The event shows characteristics expected from the decay of a Higgs boson but is also consistent with background Standard Model physics processes.


L. Taylor/T. McCauley/CERN

A subatomic particle discovered last year could be the Higgs boson.

European physicists said new data, unveiled on Thursday, "strongly indicates" the particle is a Higgs boson, what is thought to be a building block of the universe.

"The preliminary results with the full 2012 data set are magnificent and to me it is clear that we are dealing with a Higgs boson, though we still have a long way to go to know what kind of Higgs boson it is," said Joe Incandela, spokesman for the CMS experiment at the European Organization for Nuclear Research's (CERN) Large Hadron Collider, according to Agence France Presse.

Scientists at CERN announced finding a Higgs-like particle last July, according to the Associated Press. At the time, they stopped short of concluding that it was in fact the Higgs boson. The AP noted that the discovery could possibly win the Nobel Prize.

CERN said it was still an "open question" whether the particle is the Higgs or the lightest of various other bosons, according to Bloomberg.

The $10.5 billion Large Hadron Collider, which lies buried under the border of France and Switzerland and aided with the discovery, was shut down last month for maintenance. CERN said it is scheduled to reopen in 2015.

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