U.S. Department of Energy

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Glossary

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Higgs boson

This recently discovered form of matter, never before observed, is mysterious and offers a unique portal into the laws of nature. Scientists want to know what principles determine its effects on other particles; How does it interact with neutrinos or with dark matter; Is there one Higgs particle or many; Is the new particle really fundamental or is it composed of others?

Higgs sector

In particle physics, the Higgs sector is the collection of quantum fields and/or particles that are responsible for the Higgs mechanism, i.e. for the spontaneous symmetry breaking of the Higgs field. The word “sector” refers to a subgroup of the total set of fields and particles.