July 8, 2012 ALP Monthly Meeting Report
by James Kevin Ty and Christopher Louie Lu

Last July 8, members of the Astronomical League of the Philippines (ALP) held their monthly meeting at Manila Planetarium.  Members who attended were ALP President James Kevin Ty and son Kendrick Cole KC Ty ,  Secretary  Christopher Louie Lu , directors Edgar Ang, John Ray Cabrera, and Peter Benedict Tubalinal; Liza Quitlong, Jan Karlo Hernandez, Arnel Campos, Ronald Sison , Joanne Escobet and hubby Anthony, Jerome Clemente, Mark Vornhusen , Gary and Steinar Andreassen.

Meeting proper started at around 3:30pm with  ALP Secretary Christopher Louie Lu discussing on the latest much talked about Higgs Boson Particle.  Below is his sypnosis of the subject.

Last July 4, 2012, the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) held their annual International Conference for High Energy Particle research (ICHEP) at Melbourne, Australia. During the conference representatives from both CERN experiments, ATLAS & CMS, presented their report on the search for the elusive Higgs boson particle. They reported that they found a boson particle that shows the distinct characteristics of the Higgs particle. This announcement is the biggest physics news of the year but why? What is so important about the Higgs boson particle?

To understand the significance of this find we must first understand Matter and what its made of. Matter (anything that occupies space and has weight) is made out of Atoms, which then is made of Electron and a Nucleus, the Nucleus is composed of Proton & a Neutron. And finally, the Proton and Neutrons are composed of Quarks (Up & Down). Besides these particles physicist also discovered 12 other particles that make up matter and binding all of it together is what is known as the Force Carriers. These are Electro-Magnetism, Strong Nuclear Force and the Weak Nuclear Force (W & Z bosons). All these particles and force carriers make up the kind of matter that we know and love. But despite its regularity there are two things missing 1. Gravity and 2. the particle that gives the other particles its mass.

In 1964, Peter Higgs proposed a theory that a certain particle (undiscovered at the time) is responsible in giving mass to the other particles which enables matter to exist. Other physicist also made claim to this theory. Tom Kibble, Gerald Guralnik, C.R. Hagen, Francois Englert and Robert Brout also proposed what is now called the Higgs mechanism. Because of this, the Higgs particle became the most sought after discovery for any particle collider in the world.

Years will pass and other colliders besides Large Hadron Collider (LHC) were in a frantic race to find the proposed Higgs Particle (named after Peter Higgs who first made the theory). Colliders such as Tevatron and Fermilab both conducted their own experiments for this very purpose. Then on July 3, a day before CERN releases its findings, both Tevatron and Fermilab released their findings pre-empting that of ATLAS and CMS experiments of CERN. Nonetheless, all of their results yielded the same conclusion. They found a boson particle that has a mass of 126 Giga-electron Volts (GeV) that is consistent with the characteristics of the theorized Higgs boson particle. Thus, ending the long quest for the elusive Higgs boson particle also known, to some, as the “god particle”.

ALP Secretary Christopher Louie Lu discusses  on Higgs Boson Particle.

ALP President James Kevin Ty presented the 2012 Philippine Messier Marathon  Challenging Level certificate to ALP director Peter Benedict Tubalinal.

ALP President James Kevin Ty presented the 2012 Philippine Messier Marathon  Basic Level certificate to ALPer Steinar Andreassen.

ALP President James Kevin Ty presented the 2012 Philippine Messier Marathon  Basic Level certificate to ALPer Gary Andreassen.

ALP President James Kevin Ty gives consolidated Venus Transit report as well as upcoming Astro events.

ALPers listened to the interesting lectures for the July monthly meeting.

Lastly, ALP President James Kevin Ty gave a consolidated report on the just concluded June 6, 2012 Venus Transit event as well as presented the 2012 Philippine Messier Marathon certificates to members who were present on the meeting.  Rest of the participants can get their certificate by contacting James. Also discussed is the August 12, 2012 Jupiter occultation by the Moon. Observing sites will be announced on the ALP webpage in the days to come.

Meeting ended at around 6:00pm.




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