London: The capture of the most wanted sub-atomic particle in physics - Higgs boson - has topped the chart of the year's ten biggest scientific breakthroughs. Scientists had been chasing the Higgs boson, nicknamed the 'God particle' for more than four decades.
In July the team from the European nuclear research facility at CERN in Geneva announced the detection of a particle that fitted the description of the elusive Higgs.
The boson is believed to give matter mass via an associated 'Higgs field' that permeates space. Without the property of mass, the universe we live in could not exist. Scientists used the world's biggest atom smashing machine, the Large Hadron Collider on the Swiss-French border, to track down the missing particle.
Finding the Higgs topped the list of most important discoveries of 2012 released by Science, a prestigious scientific journal, the 'Daily Mail' reported. "Mass must somehow emerge from interactions of the otherwise mass-less particles themselves. That's where the Higgs comes in," Science news journalist Adrian Cho, who wrote about the discovery in the journal's latest issue, said....more
01:39 PM, Dec 21, 2012
Artificial Leaf When chemistry professor Daniel Nocera at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology showed that a device the size of a poker card could split water into hydrogen and oxygen, he was merely taking a leaf out of Mother Nature's playbook, except that he called it 'artificial leaf'. Fashioned from silicon, electronics and catalysts, Nocera's leaf mimics photosynthesis. When placed in about three litres of water, this 'leaf' produces a...
04:05 PM, Dec 21, 2011