Five years ago, at breakfast time, the world waited anxiously for news from CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research. The first nervy bunch of protons were due to be fired around the European lab’s latest and biggest particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), as it kicked into action.
Some “mercifully deluded people” – as Jeremy Paxman put it – feared the LHC would do no end of mischief. There was talk of planet-swallowing black holes, the transformation of the Earth into a new state of “strange” matter, and even the prospect of the obliteration of the entire universe. But for those of more sensible dispositions, the LHC’s first beam was an occasion for great excitement.
As the protons sped all the way round the 27km tunnel under the countryside between Lake Geneva and the Jura Mountains, thousands of physicists and engineers celebrated decades of hard work, incredible ingenuity and sheer ambition. Together they had created the largest-ever scientific experiment.
After the LHC was switched on, project leader Lyn Evans said, “We can now look forward to a new era of understanding about the origins and evolution of the universe.”
Operating a massive particle accelerator requires much more than flicking a switch – thousands of individual elements have to all come together, synchronised in time to less than a billionth of a second.
University College London’s physicist Jon Butterworth recalls a “particularly bizarre memory” from that day. Relaxing in a Westminster pub after an exhausting LHC event in London, Butterworth found he could follow live updates from his own ATLAS experiment on the pub’s TV.
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Researchers at the Large Hadron Collider have witnessed particles called D-mesons flipping from matter into antimatter and back.
Antimatter is identical to matter, but with opposite electric charge.
Such “oscillations” are well known among three other particle types, but this is the first time D-mesons have been seen doing it in a single study.
The team behind the collider’s LHCb detector have put their results on the Arxiv repository.
The manuscript will be published in Physical Review Letters.
In the complicated zoo of subatomic physics, particles routinely decay into other particles, or spontaneously change from a matter type to their antimatter counterparts.
This “oscillation” forms an important part of the theory that attempts to tame the zoo – the Standard Model.
Mesons are part of a large family of particles made up of the fundamental particles known as quarks. This is a nice moment, it’s a sort of completeness Chris Parkes University of Manchester
The protons and neutrons at the centres of the atoms of matter we know well are each made up of three such quarks.
Mesons, on the other hand, are made of just two – specifically one quark and one antimatter quark.
Theory holds that four members of the meson family can undergo the matter-antimatter oscillation – the matter and antimatter quarks both flip to their opposites.
Three particle types – K-mesons and two types of B-mesons had been caught in the act before.
LHCb has already been intimately involved in refining those prior measurements; in March 2012, the team confirmed earlier oscillation observations of a meson called Bs, and published the result in Physics Letters B.
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Washington:Collisions at the Large Hadron Collider may have created a new type of matter known as colour-glass condensate, scientists believe.
Collisions between protons and lead ions at the LHC near Geneva, Switzerland have resulted in surprising behaviour in some of the particles created by the collisions, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) news reported.
When beams of particles crash into each other at high speeds, the collisions yield hundreds of new particles, most of which fly away from the collision point at close to the speed of light.
However, the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) team at the LHC found that in a sample of 2 million lead-proton collisions, some pairs of particles flew away from each other with their respective directions correlated.
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Scientist backing Higgs boson find
Professor Rolf Heuer, director general of Cern, believes it is ‘beyond any doubt’ that the ‘God particle’ has been discovered
Cern scientists reporting from the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) have claimed the discovery of a new particle consistent with the Higgs boson.
The particle has been the subject of a 45-year hunt to explain how matter attains its mass.
Both of the Higgs boson-hunting experiments at the LHC see a level of certainty in their data worthy of a “discovery”.
More work will be needed to be certain that what they see is a Higgs, however.
Prof Stephen Hawking tells the BBC’s Pallab Ghosh the discovery has cost him $100
The results announced at Cern (European Organization for Nuclear Research), home of the LHC in Geneva, were met with loud applause and cheering.
Prof Peter Higgs, after whom the particle is named, wiped a tear from his eye as the teams finished their presentations in the Cern auditorium.
“I would like to add my congratulations to everyone involved in this achievement,” he added later.
“It’s really an incredible thing that it’s happened in my lifetime.”
Prof Stephen Hawking joined in with an opinion on a topic often discussed in hushed tones.
“This is an important result and should earn Peter Higgs the Nobel Prize,” he told BBC News.
“But it is a pity in a way because the great advances in physics have come from experiments that gave results we didn’t expect.”
read the full story from BB news http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-18702455
Scientists say they have found signs of the Higgs boson while conducting tests at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) on the French-Swiss border near Geneva.
Researchers at the LHC revealed the details at a packed press conference on Tuesday which was streamed live on the internet.
The search for the Higgs boson has been taking place near Geneva in a 27-kilometre circular tunnel 100 metres below the ground.
It is dubbed the “Big Bang machine” because scientists reckon it can recreate conditions a fraction of a second after the birth of the universe.
The machine has been built as a cost of £2.6 billion and weighs more than 38,000 tonnes.
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Scientists at the Large Hadron Collider are expected to announce on Tuesday that they may have caught the first glimpse of the elusive God Particle.
Physicists working at the Cern laboratory in Geneva have summoned colleagues from around the world to a special seminar where they will announce their latest findings.
Although they will stop short of claiming a definitive scientific discovery, their data is understood to point towards the existence of the sought-after Higgs Boson – dubbed the “God particle.”
read the full article by Nick Collins of the daily telegrapgh
Spurs-a-jingle boffins in America say that the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), most puissant matter-rending machine ever assembled by humanity, may also turn out to be the first time machine ever built. According to the physicists’ calculations, instruments at the mighty particle-smasher may soon detect signs of “singlets” which it has not yet generated, sent back from their creation in the future.
“Our theory is a long shot,” admits physics prof Tom Weiler, “but it doesn’t violate any laws of physics or experimental constraints.”
According to calculations by Weiler and his colleague Chui Man Ho, if the LHC manages to generate the long-theorised but never actually seen Higgs Boson (aka “the god particle” – confirmation of its existence was a major reason for the Collider’s construction) it should also create another mysterious particle dubbed the “Higgs singlet”*. These singlets, according to Weiler and Ho, might be able to move in a fifth dimension transverse to our existing four-dimensional continuum – thus they could pop out of our universe and subsequently re-enter it elsewhere in time.
This thinking relies on the idea that the 4-D continuum we can perceive exists within a 10- or 11-dimensional universe, rather as a flat two-dimensional membrane could float suspended in normal three-d space. Versions of the so-called “M-theory” in physics hold that this is the case, but that almost all kinds of forces, waves, particles etc are stuck to the four-dimensional membrane, aka the “brane” for short.
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