A group of Croydon science students became part of history when they witnessed the ground-breaking discovery of the Higgs boson “God particle”.
An annual trip by Trinity School’s year 12 physics pupils to Cern, home to the Hadron Collider that is at the forefront of physics research, was given a boost when the Swiss centre announced the discovery of the Higgs boson on Wednesday, July 4.
The team of 20 students flew to Switzerland last Tuesday evening and arrived early on Wednesday for the tour.
Clare Pomery, 17, said: “We have talked about particle physics leading up to the trip so we all knew about it and most of us have done reading around it too so we knew just how important this was.”
The group was still given the tour and discovered the full extent of the new outside the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) a cathedral-sized partlice detector 100m underground where much of the Higgs boson research was conducted.
Mr Flanagan said: “There were three scientists waiting outside. One was so excited, he was shouting ‘We found it, we found it’.”
Krishan Sareen, 16, said: “We were so lucky. It is something I will never forget.”
The news made headlines around the world and proved a fundamental theory about the energy fields in space that was first proposed almost 50 years ago.
Lee Flanagan, who is set to become head of physics at the South Croydon school, organised the trip.
He said: “We organised this last year so we had no idea.
“The first inkling I had was on the Monday when I found out they were planning to call a press conference.
"Obviously, much of their work was towards finding Higgs boson, but to have the announcement made on the day we were there was incredible.”