Higgs, Peter Ware

Higgs, Peter Ware, 1929–, British theoretical physicist, Ph.D. Kings College London, 1954. Higgs joined the faculty at the Univ. of Edinburgh in 1960. He was awarded the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics with François Englert for the theory of how particles acquire mass. Higgs proposed the theory in 1964; working independently, Englert and Robert Brout, as well as a third group of physicists, presented similar papers that year. In 2012, the theory was confirmed by researchers at the CERN laboratory in Switzerland when they detected the so-called Higgs particle, or Higgs boson. This work was central to defining how the universe is built, as it explains how elementary matter gathers the mass to form everything from plants and animals to stars and planets. See also elementary particles.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Physics: Biographies