Faculty mentor, Al Goshaw, Professor of Physics
This article by Ashley Yeager appeared in Duke Research in July 2011.
Dressed in a navy blue t-shirt and jeans with a brownish-blonde crew cut, Joshua Loyal appears to be a typical college junior. Yet as he chats about his freshman summer searching for elusive and undiscovered sub-atomic particles, it's clear that, at twenty-one, Loyal has moved beyond average.
He spent that summer untangling the paths of particle collisions created at the Large Hadron Collider, or LHC. This enormous atom smasher is celebrating its first year in operation and getting closer to finding the Higgs boson. This elusive particle helps explain the origin of mass in the universe, but it hasn’t been detected yet.