In a first of its kind, a joint paper from two teams operating the massive detectors at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, Europe’s particle-physics lab near Geneva, Switzerland created a new record as it involved more than 5000 authors and and just the contributors’ name runs into 24 pages.
The physics research paper, published in the journal Nature has only 9 pages of content and the rest 24 pages is filled with authors and their institutions, said Nature.
The teams from CERN are involved in huge worldwide collaborative effort with researchers from dozens of institutions and countries and pooling their data together was the task taken up by the CERN to obtain the most precise estimate of the mass of the Higgs boson.
The Higgs boson or God Particle gives mass to other particles and thousands of scientists and engineers have worked on the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, which was successfully invented in 2012.
Robert Garisto, editor with Physical Review Letters that published the paper online, said the paper presented challenges beyond the already achieved breakthrough in the field. The herculean task of dealing with teams that have thousands of members is another task ahead for CERN, he noted.
“The biggest problem was merging the author lists from two collaborations with their own slightly different styles,” Garisto pointed out. “Every author name will also appear in the print version of the Physical Review Letters paper,” he wrote in the Nature.
Recently, some biologists expressed concern over a genomics paper with 1,000 authors, but physicists have long been accustomed to the so-called “hyperauthorship” phenomenon.