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Departmental Colloquium

Calories for Quarks: The Origin of Visible Mass in this Universe  
Guest Speaker
Craig Roberts  
Guest Affiliation
Argonne National Laboratory  
Thursday, October 1, 2015 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm  
Physics Auditorium (Rm 202)  
The 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to Higgs and Englert following discovery of the Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider. With this discovery the Standard Model of Particle Physics became complete. Its formulation and verification are a remarkable story. However, the most important chapter is the least understood. Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) is that part of the Standard Model which is supposed to describe all of nuclear physics and yet, almost fifty years after the discovery of quarks, we are only just beginning to understand how QCD builds the basic bricks for nuclei: pions, neutrons, protons. Critically, the Higgs boson is often said to give mass to everything. However, that is wrong. It only gives mass to some very simple particles, accounting for only one or two percent of the mass of more complex objects. The vast majority of mass comes from the energy needed to hold quarks together inside nuclei. I will explain this remarkable emergent phenomenon, contained fundamentally in Nambu's share of the 2008 Nobel Prize, and discuss its connection with the peculiar feature of confinement in QCD, /viz/. the fact that quarks are forever imprisoned, never reaching the freedom of a particle detector; and show how contemporary and future terrestrial experiments can help complete the book on the Standard Model.