Large Hadron Collider

Anyone physics-savvy enough to offer opinions on the LHC? By my very limited understanding, this massive particle accelerator may offer new insites into the creation and makeup of the universe, or it might create a mini black hole along the border of France and Switzerland. In any case it should do SOMETHING interesting. Just curious if others think it will be worth the x billion euros it took to put together, and if so, why.
 
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lol
 
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That black hole theory is like saying "because you can't prove otherwise, the flying spaghetti monster just may have created what we know as reality."

There's very little actual numbers to support the doomsday scenarios out there.

I think others better suited toward the debunking of those theories made their arguments over here.


...or you could ask Lithos what he thinks about it all.
 
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More contentious is whether or not they're going to see the Higgs Boson. My favorite physicist (experimental), Leon Lederman ("The God Particle") says probably.

Stephen Hawking (theoretical physicist) ("A Brief History of Time") says probably not.
 
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If they find Higgs, that will be big news in that they can pinpoint it's energy. If they don't find Higgs, it might even be bigger news. They're making a huge jump in energies with the LHC, carving out a lot of potential hiding places for Higgs. If they don't find Higgs, a lot of people are wrong about a lot of stuff.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Trogdor:
Stephen Hawking (theoretical physicist) ("A Brief History of Time") says probably not.


And he put some money down on it.
 
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quote:
If they don't find Higgs, a lot of people are wrong about a lot of stuff.


Not sure if that would equate to the theory of the Higgs particle and the entire Standard Model of physics being incorrect, or if it would just mean that their experiments geared toward sussing out the particle would be proved ineffective.
 
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Just a side note, we were arguing at work whether if a black hole was created and if it swallowed the earth, would it swallow the moon, or even say the international space station. I was of the opinion that the mass of the black hole wouldn't be any greater than that of the earth, so it's grav force would be the same as the earth, and the moon and ISS would remain in orbit.
 
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I've heard that the current consensus, such as it is, is that the LHC should reach energies where there is evidence of the Higgs particle. If it does not find the Higgs, that doesn't necessarily mean the Standard Model is completely off, but it does mean that the "expected" energy of the Higgs is wrong, or, more interestingly, perhaps the Higgs doesn't exist at all and the theory of what makes mass is off.

It may also point to the way to physicists finally throwing up their hands in disgust and saying, "Aw, fuck it. It's turtles all the way down."

I think Hawking's main reason for making the bet is because he hopes the LHC will throw a wrench in the Standard Model, therefore making things more interesting.
 
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He said as much when he made the bet. He's hoping to learn more. the weirdo.
 
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And finding out if the Higgs exists/does not exist means...?
 
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quote:
Originally posted by shake:
Just a side note, we were arguing at work whether if a black hole was created and if it swallowed the earth, would it swallow the moon, or even say the international space station. I was of the opinion that the mass of the black hole wouldn't be any greater than that of the earth, so it's grav force would be the same as the earth, and the moon and ISS would remain in orbit.


hmmm.... The center of mass would remain the same, but it's extent would be greatly reduced. I dunno.

I think you're right.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by shake:
Just a side note, we were arguing at work whether if a black hole was created and if it swallowed the earth, would it swallow the moon, or even say the international space station. I was of the opinion that the mass of the black hole wouldn't be any greater than that of the earth, so it's grav force would be the same as the earth, and the moon and ISS would remain in orbit.


OK, I think what's supposed to happen is that the black hole drops through the center of the Earth, eating stuff as it goes, bouncing back and forth, turning the Earth into Swiss cheese* in the process. Eventually it would settle down in the core and suck the rest of the planet down at its leisure. The mass of the thing would be the same as the Earth, but perhaps the process of collapse would be somewhat... er... energetic, which might... um... interfere with the orbits of the Moon and ISS.

OR, I could be blowing smoke out my ass.

* How appropriate.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by lithos:
And finding out if the Higgs exists/does not exist means...?


We can disprove the creationists, for one thing.
 
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Jeez, Boog, for someone who's so adamant about the non-existence of a god/gods, you seem awfully desperate for proof...
 
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quote:
Originally posted by lithos:
And finding out if the Higgs exists/does not exist means...?


The LHC can't prove it doesn't exist. Just that it doesn't exist within the range of the LHC's energies. There's a bunch of calcs based upon different theories (where symmetry breaks and does not, for instance, and whether neutrinos have an oh-so-slight mass) that point to different energies where Higgs should be found. If it's found and it's mass (energy, same thing) identified, then that will also validate whichever theories predicted that energy.

If it's not found within the LHC's range, then there's a problem with those theories.
 
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Desperate because my country has been hijacked by fundamentalist fear mongers.

Cutting out their tongues and binding their hands is a lifelong dream of mine.
 
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You got a second amendment there, Boog - why not use it?

quote:
If it's found and it's mass (energy, same thing) identified, then that will also validate whichever theories predicted that energy.


Ah. Good. Will validate theories. Worth it, then.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Boogerhead:
quote:
Originally posted by lithos:
And finding out if the Higgs exists/does not exist means...?


We can disprove the creationists, for one thing.


I can disprove the creationists with one sentence:

Electricity exists, therefore the universe is much much much older than 6000 years-old.

I can make that work with a series of connections, logic, all proven fact. Their arguments against that statement would require faith at the first and all subsequent connections.
 
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As does their entire intellectual process.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by lithos:
You got a second amendment there, Boog - why not use it?

quote:
If it's found and it's mass (energy, same thing) identified, then that will also validate whichever theories predicted that energy.


Ah. Good. Will validate theories. Worth it, then.


Will also improve breakfast drinks.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by lithos:
You got a second amendment there, Boog - why not use it?

quote:
If it's found and it's mass (energy, same thing) identified, then that will also validate whichever theories predicted that energy.


Ah. Good. Will validate theories. Worth it, then.


Valid theories are the first step toward successful methods, practices and productions.

Getting the race off this dying mudball would be nice.

Eventually.

It is people like this, doing things like this that we need more of.
 
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And I do exercise my 2nd amendment.

Responsibly.
 
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I like the LHC because it created demand for helium. That increased my income a little. So black hole or no fucking black hole, it's a good thing. [/Republican]
 
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Helium makes your voice funny.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by shake:
Helium makes your voice funny.


It will also stay liquid at temperatures lower than anything else, so you can get electromagnets colder, using less electricity to obtain a given magnetic force and making Trogdor some more money he will piss away on cheap guitars and donations to liberal politicians.
 
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Well worth a few billion Euro then ...
 
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Validating/disproving theories is important for a couple of reasons. Firstly, even if no applications are immediately apparent, greater understanding of fundamental forces can create applications. Did you know that certain behaviors of semi-conductor technologies (i.e. chips, the kind in the computer you're using) use quantum tunneling? Some electrons will jump over an energy barrier even though they don't have enough energy, classically speaking. This is because of the uncertainty in their position meaning that, sometimes, they just end up on the other side of the barrier by magic.

Quantum effects aren't normally necessary for understanding the "real world". When tunneling was first being theorized about, there certainly wasn't an application for it. But you can't design chips properly now unless you understand it (or at least someone understands it). If nobody bothered to theorize and validate, these technologies would never have become possible.*

The second reason is that knowledge interlocks, especially at the fundamental levels. Differences in the standard model of subatomic physics can lead to differences in calculations related to cosmology, for example, changing estimates of things like the age of the universe. This leads us back to the ultimate goal of Science, which is, as Boog points out, to prove creationists wrong.

* Strictly speaking they may have become possible through extensive empirical testing, something like how medieval cathedrals were built, but it would be a slow process of trial and error.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Biohazard:
Well worth a few billion Euro then ...


Oh yeah. Easy.
 
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quote:
by magic

Quit that, colin. Roll Eyes
 
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Getting science-fictional wid it, but if the Higgs boson confirms particular theories about the Higgs field, and the Higgs field is what confers gravity on particles, I guess the potential waaayy out is the ability to mess with gravity. If you can turn off or reverse the grabity of your spacecraft you can save a lot of money on Saturn Vs.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Bravus:
Getting science-fictional wid it, but if the Higgs boson confirms particular theories about the Higgs field, and the Higgs field is what confers gravity on particles, I guess the potential waaayy out is the ability to mess with gravity. If you can turn off or reverse the grabity of your spacecraft you can save a lot of money on Saturn Vs.


Nope. Mass. The Higgs gives things mass. May or may not give us some clues about gravity. Probably not. We might not have gravity figured out until next century... if we're still technological by then and not eating sseds in the middle of the fucking savanna and wearing mud clothes.
 
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Sorry, I meant to say 'mass' the first time. But gravity is just the space-time curvature caused by mass, so if you can mess with mass you can mess with gravity.
 
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The world would be a much better place if we just all did "creative whiningwriting".
 
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Or if we carried perpetual grudges because we're immature ex-stoners!
 
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What is the space time curvature caused by ass? I'm going to fire up my collider and find out!
 
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Am I the only one who keeps reading "large hardon collider" ?

I just can't help it.
 
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haha, I have that problem too.
 
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