Hawking Out $100 Over Higgs Discovery

He bet Michigan prof that particle would never be found
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 4, 2012 11:26 PM CDT
Updated Jul 5, 2012 1:00 AM CDT
Hawking Loses $100 Bet Over Higgs Discovery
The apparent Higgs boson discovery means Hawking is going to have to discover $100 for Michigan University's Gordon Kane.   (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

The apparent discovery of the Higgs boson particle has come at a cost to Stephen Hawking: The world-renowned physicist has lost a $100 bet with Gordon Kane of Michigan University that it wouldn't be found. "It seems I have just lost $100," Hawking tells the BBC. "This is an important result and should earn Peter Higgs the Nobel Prize," he says. "But it is a pity in a way, because the great advances in physics have come from experiments that gave results we didn’t expect."

The discovery united the scientific community in praise for Peter Higgs, the physicist who first proposed the particle's existence in 1964. The 83-year-old traveled to Switzerland to witness the announcement first-hand. "I would like to add my congratulations to everyone involved in this achievement," he said. "It’s really an incredible thing that it’s happened in my lifetime." The British professor, with characteristic modesty, insisted that the limelight belonged to the scientists who had proved that his theory was correct. (More Higgs boson stories.)

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