Professor Stephen Hawking, often condemned and acclaimed in equal measure for his doomsday theories, has now asserted that the 'God Particle' or the Higgs boson discovered by scientist in 2012, had the potential to destroy the entire universe.
This comes as just another of his bombshell theories after the physicist had in the past, gone to the extent of warning that aliens might destroy the world and also worried that artificial intelligence might do the same. But this time, Hawking has offered a bizarre scenario where the Higgs Boson would not just merely put an end to Earth, but to the whole Universe.
The noted scientist, writing his theory in his new book titled 'Starmus: 50 Years of Man in Space', said that at very high energy levels the Higgs boson could become unstable, causing a "catastrophic vacuum decay" that would case time and space, as we know them, to collapse.
"The Higgs potential has the worrisome feature that it might become meta-stable at energies about 100bn giga-electronvolts (GeV)," he wrote in his highly quoted book.
"This could mean that the universe could undergo catastrophic vacuum decay, with a bubble of the true vacuum expanding at the speed of light. This could happen at any time and we wouldn't see it coming," he said.
He has however, offered some hope saying that the possibility of this happening is extremely unlikely: "A particle accelerator that reaches 100bn GeV would be larger than Earth, and is unlikely to be funded in the present economic climate," he said sarcastically.
In essence, as noted by various reports, although Hawking's fears could be considered theoretically valid, their likelihood of actually happening is somewhere around the realm of impossibility.
He goes on to suggest, nonetheless, that the knowledge to be gained by finding out about the Higgs boson's potential to destabilise at high energies is too important to be ignored.
"If the Higgs potential is meta-stable, it places important constraints on the evolution of the universe," he said.