Thursday, April 7, 2016

750-GeV Bump Is A Third-Generation Higgs Boson--Not

Update August 5, 2016: The LHC collaborations have announced that the 750-GeV bump they saw in their 2015 data is not there in their 2016 data. It was a statistical fluke, so you can ignore this post--it's wrong. It shows once again that in physics,if you know the answer you're looking for, you can always find a way to get it.


A small excess of decays to two photons at a mass of 750 GeV, seen by both the CMS and ATLAS experiments at the LHC, has the physics community in a tizzy. If confirmed, the bump is evidence for a new particle that isn’t predicted by the Standard Model, thereby qualifying as the long-sought “new physics” that could break the current doldrums in particle physics. Theorists have already published dozens of papers attempting to explain the small bump in the data. The new particle would be a boson, most closely resembling a heavy Higgs boson with six times the 125-GeV mass of the known Higgs.

Now, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that I think the LHC’s bump is real. I predict that it is in fact a heavy Higgs boson. It turns out that such a particle can be easily explained in the context of the spacetime model that is the subject of this blog.

Summarizing briefly what I explained here, here, and here, spacetime is composed of points, which are quantum entities or quantum states. Some are fermions and some are bosons. The fermions are dragged together by gravity until they can’t get any closer together on average (there can’t be two identical fermions in the same state), whereupon they form a quantum lattice. Since spacetime looks the same whether they change lattice positions or not, quantum mechanics says there is some probability that a given point will move to an adjacent lattice position on any time tick. The Higgs field has a value of the Planck energy for a stationary point and a value of zero for a moving point, which moves at the speed of light—one lattice position per time tick. The vacuum expectation value of the Higgs field is simply the Planck energy times the probability that a fermionic point is stationary.

Quantum mechanics also says that a superposition of n quantum states is also a quantum state. In addition to the basic n = 1 spacetime,  n = 2 and n = 3 spacetimes have also been observed. Particles are excited points, or points with energy above their ground states. An excited stationary n = 1 point is an electron. An excited n = 2 point is a meson, which is a boson, so it can’t be stationary even though it’s a superposition of stationary n = 1 points. An excited stationary n = 3 point is a baryon. Superpositions of stationary points and moving points are particles moving at any velocity between zero and the speed of light.

 Points and particles in the n = 3 spacetime are superpositions of three points, each having a different position. Physicists see these as particles called quarks. To make the quantum mechanics come out right, quarks require an additional quantum number called color, which corresponds to the quark’s relative position in the superposition. Only symmetrical or colorless combinations of quarks are observed as particles.

The wave function of a such a colorless state has six terms, corresponding to the six ways of permuting three quarks, each of which can have one of three colors or positions. The color symmetry says that all six permutations represent the same state, that is, the same point, or the same particle if the point is excited. As a result, a stationary fermionic point in the n = 3 spacetime could be any of six states, all of which must then be stationary. Thus, there are six times as many stationary points in the n = 3 spacetime as in the n = 1 spacetime, the vacuum expectation value of the Higgs field in the n =  3 spacetime is six times as large as in the n = 1 spacetime, and the n = 3 Higgs boson is six times as heavy as the n = 1 Higgs boson.

Before the LHC’s discovery, no one, including me, suspected that there could be a third-generation Higgs boson, but if you look for it in our spacetime model, there it is, plain as day. Since this model represents a new paradigm for physicists, it looks crackpotty to them. If they continue to believe that all of reality can be explained within the current paradigm, they may never discover what that little bump in the LHC data really is.

By the way, since mesons are bosons and can’t form a lattice, there is no second-generation Higgs boson.