Peter Higgs ‘overwhelmed’ as he collects Nobel Prize

Peter Higgs (left) receives his Nobel Prize in Physics from Sweden's King Carl Gustaf. Pic: REUTERS
Peter Higgs (left) receives his Nobel Prize in Physics from Sweden's King Carl Gustaf. Pic: REUTERS
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PROFESSOR Peter Higgs capped a remarkable career after collecting his Nobel prize for physics at a ceremony in Stockholm.

The Edinburgh University emeritus professor, who came up with the theory behind the so-called “God Particle”, shared this year’s physics prize with Francois Englert.

Together, they developed the theory of the Higgs boson, which was finally discovered last year at the Large Hadron Collider on the French-Swiss border.

They developed the idea in the 1960s as they searched for an explanation to why the most basic building blocks of the universe have mass.

Prof Higgs has previously told how he first came up with the theory while out walking in the Cairngorms in 1964.

The 85-year-old, who has spent his entire career at Edinburgh University, was presented with his Nobel medal by Sweden’s King Carl Gustav at the Stockholm Concert Hall.

When he was revealed as this year’s winner of the Nobel prize in October, Prof Higgs said: “I am overwhelmed to receive this award and thank the Royal Swedish Academy.

“I would also like to congratulate all those who have contributed to the discovery of this new particle and to thank my family, friends and colleagues for their support.

“I hope this recognition of fundamental science will help raise awareness of the value of blue-sky research.”

In the build-up to yesterday’s presentation, particle physicist Prof Lars Brink told the audience: “On July 4, 2012, [scientists] spread the news that they had found the particle. It had been found that nature follows precisely that law that Higgs had created – a fantastic triumph for science.”

In last week’s Autumn Statement, Chancellor George Osborne announced that an 
£11 million space technology centre named after Prof Higgs was to be built in Edinburgh.

The Higgs Centre for Innovation will be based at the Royal Observatory.