Large Hadron Collider
September 17, 2008
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It was all over the news last week, but many people shrugged
their shoulders and scratched their heads at the mention of the Large Hadron
Collider and its first test run at CERN. For those students that are science
savvy, the first test run marked an epic breaking point in particle physics
research and cosmic theory.
The particle accelerator, located at CERN headquarters in
is a relatively simple instrument. By launching and spinning a beam of protons
in a clockwise direction, and another beam of protons in a counterclockwise
direction, CERN plans on colliding the protons in the instrument in an attempt
to recreate the Higgs Boson.
Unsure about the Higgs Boson? The massive particle, created
from mass-less material, is the starting particle from the very popular Big
Bang Theory. By creating the Higgs Boson (a particle that does contain mass)
from one that does not, scientists and particle physicists alike will have the
first substantial proof of the theory that created our universe and the Earth.
As many may have heard, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC for
short) is under a large amount of scrutiny from some in the scientific
community. While yes, it does seem like the collision of these particles will
provide people with a great amount of information about our scientific
creation, there is a slight negative. What if we do not create the Higgs Boson?
The result would be micro black holes, tiny black holes in the middle of the
earth that would start to gravitationally grab tiny particles. As the black
holes start to fill with particles they would become highly explosive, creating
more and more black holes in their path.
So is the LHC safe? Does the 50 percent chance of solving a
natural mystery versus exploding CERN really benefit the scientific community?
Many say “yes.” Many believe that the information that will come from CERN is
worth more than the possibility of microscopic chasms.
If you are still confused, LHC instruments are actually very
popular in modern fiction. Although not completely factual, Dan Brown’s Angels and Demons, soon to be a major
motion picture, involves LHC technology and the creation of matter from
Keep your eyes out for information about the actual run of
the CERN LHC on Oct. 21 to see if scientists can actually determine the cause,
with scientific indisputable evidence, of the Big Bang.