Light Higgs channel of the resonant decay of magnon condensate in superfluid 3He-B

V. V. Zavjalov, S. Autti, V. B. Eltsov, P. J. Heikkinen, G. E. Volovik

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In superfluids the order parameter, which describes spontaneous symmetry breaking, is an analogue of the Higgs field in the Standard Model of particle physics. Oscillations of the field amplitude are massive Higgs bosons, while oscillations of the orientation are massless Nambu-Goldstone bosons. The 125 GeV Higgs boson, discovered at Large Hadron Collider, is light compared with electroweak energy scale. Here, we show that such light Higgs exists in superfluid 3He-B, where one of three Nambu-Goldstone spin-wave modes acquires small mass due to the spin–orbit interaction. Other modes become optical and acoustic magnons. We observe parametric decay of Bose-Einstein condensate of optical magnons to light Higgs modes and decay of optical to acoustic magnons. Formation of a light Higgs from a Nambu-Goldstone mode observed in 3He-B opens a possibility that such scenario can be realized in other systems, where violation of some hidden symmetry is possible, including the Standard Model.
Original languageEnglish
Article number10294
JournalNature Communications
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • helium-3
  • superfluid
  • Higgs
  • magnon quasiparticle excitation

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