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    Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    ScienceDaily (Aug. 10, 2008) — The first attempt to circulate a beam in the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will be made on 10 September. This news comes as the cool down phase of commissioning CERN’s new particle accelerator reaches a successful conclusion.

    The LHC is the world’s most powerful particle accelerator, producing beams seven times more energetic than any previous machine, and around 30 times more intense when it reaches design performance, probably by 2010. Housed in a 27-kilometre tunnel, it relies on technologies that would not have been possible 30 years ago. The LHC is, in a sense, its own prototype.

    Starting up such a machine is not as simple as flipping a switch. Commissioning is a long process that starts with the cooling down of each of the machine’s eight sectors. This is followed by the electrical testing of the 1600 superconducting magnets and their individual powering to nominal operating current. These steps are followed by the powering together of all the circuits of each sector, and then of the eight independent sectors in unison in order to operate as a single machine.

    By the end of July, this work was approaching completion, with all eight sectors at their operating temperature of 1.9 degrees above absolute zero (-271°C). The next phase in the process is synchronization of the LHC with the Super Proton Synchrotron (SPS) accelerator, which forms the last link in the LHC’s injector chain. Timing between the two machines has to be accurate to within a fraction of a nanosecond.

    A first synchronization test is scheduled for the weekend of 9 August, for the clockwise-circulating LHC beam, with the second to follow over the coming weeks. Tests will continue into September to ensure that the entire machine is ready to accelerate and collide beams at an energy of 5 TeV per beam, the target energy for 2008. Force majeure notwithstanding, the LHC will see its first circulating beam on 10 September at the injection energy of 450 GeV (0.45 TeV).

    Once stable circulating beams have been established, they will be brought into collision, and the final step will be to commission the LHC’s acceleration system to boost the energy to 5 TeV, taking particle physics research to a new frontier.

    ‘We’re finishing a marathon with a sprint,’ said LHC project leader Lyn Evans. ‘It’s been a long haul, and we’re all eager to get the LHC research programme underway.’

  2. #2
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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Is the World About to Go Out With a Bang?

    By Rebecca McQuillan reports

    LOOK outside your window. Is it a beautiful day? Is it raining again? If so, welcome it, go out now in your socks and run about in it. Kiss a stranger. Make the most of every minute, because the doomsayers predict that we might not be here at Christmas.

    A tiny minority believe that the European Nuclear Research Centre (CERN) Big Bang Experiment, due to begin on Wednesday, is a folly that could create a black hole the whole world will be sucked into. Most interested scientists, we can rest assured, wholly disagree.

    Nevertheless, the flurry of recent talk about whether the planet is about to disappear down the cosmic plughole has provided a last- minute buzz around what is the most hotly anticipated scientific event of the new millennium. Scientists hope the Big Bang Experiment will help answer some of the most profound questions they have.

    WHAT IS IT?

    It's an experiment designed to recreate the conditions that existed a billionth of a second after the Big Bang, 14 billion years ago. It will be done by smashing protons together at near-light speed. Dr Stephan Eisenhardt, a particle physicist at Edinburgh University, who is working on the project investigating antimatter, says: "We are starting a 10-year expedition into an unknown domain of physics."

    HOW WILL THEY DO IT?

    By using a remarkable instrument called the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), not only the most powerful particle collider but the biggest scientific instrument in the world. It's 27km long and in a location to make a Bond villain weep with envy, far below ground on the Franco-Swiss border.

    The accelerator itself is a long circular tunnel containing a vacuum, dubbed "the emptiest space in the solar system", and the particles will be guided between magnets. There will be two beams of 100 billion protons that will crash into one another 40 million times a second.

    The machine has six detectors for monitoring what's going on, each one designed to study something different - the Atlas detector alone is half the size of Notre Dame cathedral. The experiment is predicted to generate a "data avalanche" of more than 15 million gigabytes a year, requiring a superfast internet network that is 10,000 times faster than ordinary broadband. The enormous magnets have to be cooled to almost absolute zero - minus 271 degrees Celsius - making it, in Dr Eisenhardt's words, "the biggest fridge on earth".

    WHAT MIGHT THEY DISCOVER?

    As Dr Eisenhardt puts it, physicists are seeking proof of the "known unknowns" to fill the gaps in current theories and also the "unknown unknowns" - information they haven't even predicted yet. Four main experiments have been set up and two smaller ones. The so- called Atlas detector as well as CMS, which use different magnet designs, are seeking proof of a famous known unknown: the Higgs boson, also known as the God particle, named after Prof Peter Higgs, emeritus professor at Edinburgh University.

    His theory, first expounded in 1964, explained a great mystery of physics: why, when sub atomic particles are weightless, do things made of atoms, such as books, humans and planets, have mass? He suggested that subatomic particles were indeed weightless, until they came within the range of a particular type of field. The field, in keeping with theory, would have corresponding particles, popularly known as Higgs bosons.

    Two Belgian physicists, Robert Brout and Francois Englert, reached a similar conclusion at the same time. The Higgs boson is part of the jigsaw that makes up the so-called Standard Model, a theory for explaining the universe that has been successfully tested by physicists over decades.

    For 40 years, the race has been on to prove the God particle's existence, so elusive that some have renamed it the "goddamn particle". Still, not everyone is so sure it will be found, including Prof Stephen Hawking. Prof Higgs himself, now 78, has said of the forthcoming experiment: "If I'm wrong, I'll be rather sad." If he's right, he will win the Nobel prize.

    WHAT OTHER THINGS?

    Atlas and CMS will also try to pin down the nature of dark matter, which is thought to make up 90per cent of the universe.

    Besides them, there are two other big detectors, LHCb and ALICE, and two smaller ones, Totem and LHCf. LHCb will try to find out what happened to the missing antimatter that eroded at the beginning of time. ALICE will collide the nucleii of lead, instead of protons, creating temperatures that are 100,000 times hotter than the sun's centre with the aim of "melting" protons and neutrons into quarks and gluons, creating a "plasma" like that which existed just after the Big Bang. Scientists will watch to see how it produces recognisable matter. LHCf will try to simulate cosmic rays, which may be a factor in climate change, while Totem will measure protons.

    SO WHO'S WORRIED ABOUT BLACK HOLES?

    . In March, a lawsuit was filed in Hawaii by two concerned citizens seeking to prevent the LHC operating pending further safety reports. As well as suggesting that a tiny black hole could grow and devour the Earth, they feared that a body called a Strangelet could be emitted, turning Earth into shrunken "strange matter". Three CERN safety reports have concluded the collider is safe. In fact, there is doubt that even tiny black holes will be produced. A further bid to prevent the switch-on was rejected by the European Court of Human Rights last Friday, though the court is still to rule on a claim that the collider violates the right to life.

    Dr Eisenhardt says there is "no risk whatsoever". "When these allegations were raised, our own people reassessed it again. They shed light on it from every angle and we can confirm there is no risk. The best way to look at it is: our accelerator has a certain limit for how energetically we can smash particles together. In the outer atmosphere of the Earth, we have intergalactic particles hitting the atmosphere that are more energetic than anything we can produce. We know that they create mini black holes that decay into radiation - if they didn't, we wouldn't exist."

    ANY OTHER CONSEQUENCES?

    . Two Russian scientists wrote in the New Scientist that the experiment could possibly create "wormholes", tunnels in space-time that could, theoretically, enable time travel. They would be so teeny that only subatomic particles could pass through - and as time travel is only possible from the date at which the first time machine is invented, it would only open a gateway to the future, not the past, making 2008 "year zero".

    Many scientists, it must be said, are very sceptical.

    COULD IT HELP GENERATE ENERGY IN NEW WAYS?

    Not directly, but the development of the refridgeration technology and the magnets could be useful to international nuclear fusion project, ITER. We're still 30 to 50 years away from attempting to produce electricity this way because it's highly complicated and has to be very carefully confined.

    IS LHC A EUROPEAN VENTURE?

    It's dominated by Europe, but it's an effort of international cooperation. A total of 111 countries have been involved in the design, building, testing of equipment and as analysts. More than 20, mainly European, countries contributed to the GBP4.4bn cost of the LHC, but the US also gave GBP250m after plans for its even bigger Superconducting Supercollider were cancelled by Congress. Some 2500 physicists from 37 countries are working on Atlas and a similar number on CMS. LCHb has 600 scientists from 44 countries.

    Glasgow and Edinburgh universities are closely involved, working on ATLAS and LHCb. One key British figure is Professor Brian Cox of Manchester University, who got his first-class degree in physics in the mid-1990s at the same time as being keyboard player with D: Ream. He will join Andrew Marr in the LHC control room on Wednesday for a special edition of the Today programme.

    Incidentally, TV coverage of the start-up will be made available through Eurovision - the TV company now almost exclusively known for that other great panEuropean enterprise, the Eurovision Song Contest.

    WHAT HAPPENS NEXT WEEK?

    The first proton beams will be fired and once they're circulating, will be brought into collision and accelerated.

    BBC Radio 4 will broadcast live from CERN on September 10. The Big Bang Day starts in the LHC control room at 8.30am and continues through the day.

    Originally published by Newsquest Media Group.

    (c) 2008 Herald, The; Glasgow (UK). Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.
    Story from REDORBIT NEWS:
    http://www.redorbit.com/news/display/?id=1544948

    Published: 2008/09/05 12:00:00 CDT

    © RedOrbit 2005

  3. #3
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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Yes, and Eddie Teller on the Manhattan Project thought there was an outside chance that an unrestrained fission reaction ( Da Bomb) would spread through the atmosphere and incinerate the whole planet.
    Teller also raised the speculative possibility that an atomic bomb might "ignite" the atmosphere, because of a hypothetical fusion reaction of nitrogen nuclei. Bethe calculated, according to Serber, that it could not happen. In his book The Road from Los Alamos, Bethe says a refutation was written by Konopinski, C. Marvin, and Teller as report LA-602, showing that ignition of the atmosphere was impossible, not just unlikely.[7] In Serber's account, Oppenheimer mentioned it to Arthur Compton, who "didn't have enough sense to shut up about it. It somehow got into a document that went to Washington" which led to the question being "never laid to rest".

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manhattan_project

    "I don't want to set the woorld on fiiiire..."

  4. #4
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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    We'll all get sucked through a black hole no bigger around than a silver dollar. :rryumy:

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Boon or doom? Collider stirs debate
    Chapter 2: Cutting through the hype over black holes and future benefits By Alan Boyle, Science editor
    updated 5:03 p.m. ET, Mon., Sept. 8, 2008

    Will the Large Hadron Collider save the world, or destroy it?

    Researchers involved in the collider project at Europe's CERN research center might wish that the general public was captivated by the quest for the Higgs boson, the search for supersymmetric particles and even the evidence for extra dimensions.

    But if the feedback so far is any guide, the real headline-grabber is the claim that the world's most powerful particle-smasher could create microscopic black holes that some fear would gobble up the planet.

    The black-hole scenario is even getting its day in court: Critics of the project have called for the suspension of work on the European collider until the scenario receives a more thorough safety review, filing separate legal challenges in U.S. federal court and the European Court of Human Rights.

    The strange case of the planet-eating black hole serves as just one example showing how grand scientific projects can lead to a collision between science fiction and science fact. The hubbub also has led some to question why billions of dollars are being spent on a physics experiment so removed from everyday life.

    Why do it?
    Michio Kaku, a theoretical physicist at the the City College of New York, acknowledged that people often ask about the practical applications of particle physics. Even if physicists figure out how a particle called the Higgs boson creates the property of mass in the universe, how will that improve life on Earth?

    "Sometimes the public says, 'What's in it for Numero Uno? Am I going to get better television reception? Am I going to get better Internet reception?' Well, in some sense, yeah," he said. "All the wonders of quantum physics were learned basically from looking at atom-smasher technology."

    Kaku noted that past discoveries from the world of particle physics ushered in many of the innovations we enjoy today, ranging from satellite communications and handheld media players to medical PET scanners (which put antimatter to practical use).

    "But let me let you in on a secret: We physicists are not driven to do this because of better color television," he added. "That's a spin-off. We do this because we want to understand our role and our place in the universe."

    About those black holes ...
    The black holes that may (or may not) be generated by the Large Hadron Collider would have theoretical rather than practical applications.

    If the collider's detectors turn up evidence of black holes, that would suggest that gravity is stronger on a subatomic scale than it is on the distance scales scientists have been able to measure so far. That, in turn, would support the weird idea that we live in a 10- or 11-dimensional universe, with some of the dimensions rolled up so tightly that they can't be perceived.

    Some theorists say the idea would explain why gravity is so much weaker than the universe's other fundamental forces — for example, why a simple magnet can match the entire Earth's gravitational force pulling on a paper clip. These theorists suggest that much of the gravitational field is "leaking out" into the extra dimensions.

    "It will be extremely exciting if the LHC did produce black holes," CERN theoretical physicist John Ellis said. "OK, so some people are going to say, 'Black holes? Those big things eating up stars?' No. These are microscopic, tiny little black holes. And they’re extremely unstable. They would disappear almost as soon as they were produced."

    Not everyone is convinced that the black holes would disappear. "It doesn't have to be that way," said Walter Wagner, a former radiation safety officer with a law degree who is one of the plaintiffs in the federal lawsuit. Despite a series of reassuring scientific studies, Wagner and others insist that the black holes might not fizzle out, and they fear that the mini-singularities produced by the Large Hadron Collider will fall to the center of the earth, grow larger and swallow more and more of Earth's matter.

    Ellis, Kaku and a host of other physicists point out that cosmic rays in space are far more energetic than the collisions produced in the Large Hadron Collider, and do not produce the kinds of persistent black holes claimed by the critics. In the most recent report, CERN scientists rule out the globe-gobbling black holes and the other nightmares enumerated in the lawsuit, even under the most outlandish scenarios. Wagner remains unconvinced, however.

    "I don't think the knowledge we are going to acquire by doing such an experiment outweighs the risk that we are taking, if we can't quantify that risk. ... We need to obtain other evidence," he said.

    Strangelets, monopoles and more
    Black holes aren't Wagner's only worry: He also is concerned that when the collider creates a soup of free-flying quarks, some of those quarks might recombine in a hazardous way — creating a stable, negatively charged "strangelet" that could turn everything it touches into more strangelets.

    The lawsuit also suggests that magnetic monopoles — basically, magnets with only a north or a south pole, but not both — could be created in the collider and wreak havoc.

    Physicists point out that such phenomena have never been seen, either in previous collider experiments or in the wide cosmos beyond Earth.

    "The experiments that we will do with the LHC have been done billions of times by cosmic rays hitting the earth," Ellis said. "They're being done continuously by cosmic rays hitting our astronomical bodies, like the moon, the sun, like Jupiter and so on and so forth. And the earth's still here, the sun's still here, the moon's still here. LHC collisions are not going to destroy the planet."

    But how will all those collisions benefit the planet?


    "We don't justify CERN or other big particle accelerators on the basis of spin-offs or technology transfer," Ellis said. "Of course, we do have programs for that. Personally, I believe that the most important knowledge transfer that we can make is by training young people who then maybe go off and do something else. I think that's probably more important than some particular technological widget that we may develop.

    "I think the primary justification for this sort of science that we do is fundamental human curiosity," Ellis said. "It's true, of course, that every previous generation that's made some breakthrough in understanding nature has seen those discoveries translated into new technologies, new possibilities for the human race. That may well happen with the Higgs boson. Quite frankly, at the moment I don't see how you can use the Higgs boson for anything useful."

    Kaku takes a different view: He said physicists will have to do a better job of explaining the potential payoffs if they expect taxpayers to keep covering the multibillion-dollar cost of exploring the scientific frontier. He pointed to the example of the Superconducting Super Collider — a project planned for Texas that would have been bigger than the Large Hadron Collider, but was canceled by Congress after $2 billion had been spent.

    "After that cancellation, we physicists learned that we have to sing for our supper," Kaku said. "The Cold War is over. You can't simply say 'Russia!' to Congress, and they whip out their checkbook and say, 'How much?' We have to tell the people why this atom-smasher is going to benefit their lives."

    Forecasting future benefits
    If past physics experiments are any guide, the potential payoffs would likely come in three areas, Kaku said:
    # Telecommunications: The challenge of dealing with all the data created by past experiments led to the creation of the World Wide Web at CERN in 1990. In a similar way, the Large Hadron Collider could usher in an era of global distributed computing and more efficient mass data storage. A better understanding of the subatomic world could lead to breakthroughs in quantum computing and super-secure communication.

    # Medicine: Particle accelerators are already playing a fast-rising role in cancer treatment and medical imaging. New technologies developed for the Large Hadron Collider could well find their way into hospitals of the future. The ultrasensitive photon detector built for the LHCb experiment is a prime example, said the project's deputy spokesperson, Roger Forty. "I think there will be some cross-pollination with medical applications," he told msnbc.com.

    # Energy: Kaku suggested that the insights gained from the Large Hadron Collider could be applied to developing new energy sources in the decades ahead — such as controlled fusion power. Those microscopic black holes might even play a long-range role in the energy quest. "Some people think that maybe black holes in outer space may be a source of energy for future civilizations," he said.

    Looking even farther ahead, Kaku noted that a deeper understanding of the universe has always led to technological leaps. Harnessing mechanical power led to the steam engine and the industrial revolution of the 19th century. The unification of electricity and magnetism led to computers, lasers and other 20th-century wonders. Unlocking the secrets of the atom led to the triumphs and terrors of the nuclear age.

    "Human history has been shaped by the progressive unraveling of gravity, electricity and magnetism, and the nuclear force," Kaku said. "Now we are at the brink of the granddaddy of all such unifications ... the unification of all forces into a super force. We think the super force is superstring theory, a super force that drove the big bang, that created the heavens and the earth, that drives the sun, that makes all the wondrous technologies of the earth possible."

    Will that great revelation come from the LHC? Even Kaku thinks that would be too much of a giant leap. "The Large Hadron Collider will not open up a gateway to another universe," he said. "It will not open up a hole in space. But it will try to nail down the equations which would allow perhaps an advanced civilization to do precisely that, to manipulate the fabric of space and time."

    How will the machine do that? Ironically, it takes bigger and bigger machines to unlock the smallest subatomic mysteries — and the Large Hadron Collider is the biggest Big Bang Machine ever built. With its tangles of wiring, twists of plumbing and 17 miles of supercooled magnets, the machine may well rank as one of the engineering wonders of the 21st century.

    Wednesday: Showtime for the Big Bang Machine
    © 2008 MSNBC Interactive

    URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24556999/


    Physicist Michio Kaku discusses the worries and wonders that surround the Large Hadron Collider
    Nightmares and dreams surrounding LHC
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25356219/from/ET/
    Last edited by SunniOne; 09-09-2008 at 08:37 AM.

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10



    Hope it doesn't interfer with the CMT award nominations scheduled for tomorrow..:zx11pissed:
    I'd rather have roses on my table than diamonds on my neck. ~Emma Goldman

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Yep, we're doomed alright. At least we can now quit worring about global warming. I'm prepared, however. I have rigged a tube that I strap on my face that has pair of lips on the other end. When the collapse starts to happen, I can then kiss my ass good bye.

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Oh well...we all have to go sometime!!!! It just may be sooner than later!!!!

    zwani.com myspace graphic comments
    I'd rather have roses on my table than diamonds on my neck. ~Emma Goldman

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Quote Originally Posted by peregrine View Post
    Oh well...we all have to go sometime!!!! It just may be sooner than later!!!!
    With so much left undone?...
    Attachment 6958
    Last edited by dr poormouth; 01-07-2010 at 08:15 PM.

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    1 hour till the end of the world....

    :rasta:

  11. #11
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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Nope. World's still here...

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Quote Originally Posted by kazza View Post
    Nope. World's still here...
    For now. I bet that's one place in the world that nobody dares say "oooppps". hehehehe :judges:

  13. #13
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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Hey, how do we know we're still here and haven't been big banged into another demention? Would we know it? Then would we concider it being here rather than there? Because we're not here anymore, we're there. But then, here would be there, and there here. What proof is there that we are here and not there? :spin2::blunt:

  14. #14
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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Quote Originally Posted by kazza View Post
    Nope. World's still here...
    Actually, today (the "First Beam") was sort of a trial run around the block to get the kinks out. The actual subatomic collisions aren't due to begin until next month. So don't go away. The real fun hasn't started yet.

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Quote Originally Posted by SunniOne View Post
    Actually, today (the "First Beam") was sort of a trial run around the block to get the kinks out. The actual subatomic collisions aren't due to begin until next month. So don't go away. The real fun hasn't started yet.
    Well keep us posted...meanwhile I get prepared for my destiny!!!!
    I'd rather have roses on my table than diamonds on my neck. ~Emma Goldman

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    Re: Large Hadron Collider To Start Up September 10

    Quote Originally Posted by SunniOne View Post
    Actually, today (the "First Beam") was sort of a trial run around the block to get the kinks out. The actual subatomic collisions aren't due to begin until next month. So don't go away. The real fun hasn't started yet.
    I hope I can get my car paid off before the world ends next month...

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