US 'atom smasher' could get more time to hunt 'God particle'

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London, July 23 (ANI): The American Tevatron accelerator may get three more years of life to enable scientists to continue the hunt for Higgs boson or the so called "God particle".

The "atom smasher" is currently due to cease operations in 2011.

The elusive Higgs boson is a sub-atomic particle considered crucial to the current theory of particle physics.

Researchers spelled out details of the discussions at a major conference in Paris.

The International Conference on High Energy Physics (ICHEP) runs from 22-28 July.

The Tevatron, which is based in Batavia, Illinois, is operated by the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab).

The accelerator is the principal American rival to the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), located on the French-Swiss border.

Both machines aim to be first in the hunt to find the Higgs.

"We have made big progress at the Tevatron... we have collected lots of data over the last couple of years and this will help us to exclude a significant range of possible Higgs masses," The BBC quoted Stefan Soldner-Rembold, spokesman for the DZero experiment at the Tevatron, as saying.

He added: "This will make the region where the Higgs boson can hide smaller and smaller."

Speaking at ICHEP, Dr Donatella Lucchesi, who works on the Collider Detector (CDF) experiment at Fermilab, said: "These Higgs mass ranges are within reach of the Tevatron."

A decision to extend the life of the Tevatron until 2014 could be taken by the end of this year. (ANI)

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