Recently there was a bit of a kerfuffle triggered by someone leaking here the abstract of an internal ATLAS document claiming to have found a Higgs signal as a bump in the gamma-gamma invariant mass distribution. After some initial discussion of this, I wrote:
Best guess seems to be that this is either a hoax, or something that will disappear on further analysis.
It quickly became clear this was not a hoax, but now there’s a new leak, this one from CMS to New Scientist, which indicates that “disappear on further analysis” is where this is going:
Now physicists working on the LHC’s other main detector, CMS, have come up empty in an initial search for a similar bump in their data, according to a document shown to New Scientist. So ATLAS’s bump may not be due to Higgs particles, after all, but instead down to something mundane, such as an error in the analysis.
The internal CMS document has not been released to the public, so the result is still preliminary, as was the news of the original ATLAS bump, for that matter, which was leaked before it was reviewed or endorsed by the ATLAS collaboration.
Well, maybe first news of the Higgs won’t show up on a blog, but at a more standard journalistic outlet…
Update: Curiouser and curiouser. It seems that there are questions about the existence of the supposed CMS document leaked to New Scientist. In other rumors floating around, while there may not be such a CMS document shooting down this signal, there really is an ATLAS one, soon to see the light of day. In any case, there are no rumors I’m aware of that there’s any confirmation of the original signal.
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