Mar 19 2010What Does That Even Mean?: Large Hadron Collider "Sets 3.5-Trillion Volt Energy Record"


I don't know, but it doesn't sound good. I better finish my rocket double-time before this thing goes and swallows up the solar system. WHO'S COMING WITH ME? I have room for three. Plus snacks.

Operators of the world's largest atom smasher on Friday ramped up their massive machine to three times the energy ever previously achieved, in the run-up to experiments probing the secrets of the universe.

The European Organization for Nuclear Research, or CERN, said beams of protons circulated at 3.5 trillion electron volts in both directions around the 17-mile tunnel housing the Large Hadron Collider under the Swiss-French border at Geneva.

The next major development is expected in a few days when CERN starts colliding the beams in a new round of research to examine the tiniest particles and forces within the atom in hopes of finding out more about how matter is made up.

Not to put a damper on your weekend, but we're all as good as dead. So you know what that means -- drink like you've never drank before!*

*Geekologie accepts no responsibility for alcohol poisoning but will take all the credit if you manage to score some awkward, drunken sex.

Atom Smasher Sets 3.5-Trillion Volt Energy Record [foxnews]

Thanks to hybridsix, who promises to sabotage the machine with more bread. Smart, hybridsix, way to buy us some time.

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Reader Comments

You think they turned their lights off for Earth day?

(>^-^)> ~ Kirby says, "We should leave the secrets of the universe alone, there is no sense in probing, why not get answers first!"

Who are they fooling? Atom smasher my behind... This is obviously a cover for a death star!

And since nobody has said "First"


Wow. I wonder how much energy they had to put in to achieve that...


@ 4

I plan to.

This is awesome, except for the fact that it may create miniature black holes which will swallow the whole solar system. That would be cool too, except that I live here.

Oooh! I'll bring the cheetos!

So I says, "Supercollider? I just met her." And then they built the supercollider.

what an amazing archeticture!! i wish i have the time to have a look at it in the not long future!!

everybody get ready for that flashforward blackout sh!t

What sort of snacks are they?

There's nothing scary about it. What 3.5 TeV "means" is that they are able to probe subatomic matter at smaller, more fundamental scales. That machine isn't going to swallow the Earth or open up a black hole, or even blow anything up. I've worked at the accelerator in Silicon Valley for years now, from SLC through to the PEP project and now LCLS, and we've never done anything remotely described by the author of this article. Science is done at these institutions, probing the secrets of nature to better understand the world around us and how we relate to it. This is important, and is part of our human nature. There is nothing to be afraid of from the phenomenal research being done in particle physics to explore the depths of the Standard Model.

its too bad people arent more concerned with probing the secrets of their own minds..

their sad, pathetic little minds

"ooh, look! a butterfly!"

Nice Ryan, nice.

@11 = Nerdy Douche

why do we need to "learn" more about the world around us? Why is the sky blue, how does Posi-track on a Plymouth work? It just does.

The last time they tried this, the earth turned into a sparkly strangelet.

And that's why the dinos are now extinct.

Oooo look, a butterfly!

Fail. Volt = potential, electron-volt = energy.


I hope you're right, because every time we believed a scientist, they only made bombs and segways and shit. They never bring dinosaurs back to life, like they promised us.

Fail. Volt = potential, electron-volt = energy.

1.21 GIGAWATTS!!!???!?


I want the eagle novelty head


This is a complete photoshop job. You can tell its a fale because the shadow's are all wrong.

This is exactly like that scene in the movie Never BAck Down where Max failed to save his butlers brother from a cave in, and the brother later came back and stranded him in space.

At least GW didn't call it the Hardon this time. =p

dang still not enough for my flex capicteor

It means exactly what it says, the LHC has accelerated 3.5*10^12 eV of energy.

Despite the fact that sounds like a lot, it's still less than a joule (1Electron Volt = 1.602*10^-19 Joules). To put that into perspective to you, a common 60 Watt lightbulb will use 60 Joules of energy every second.

You should edit the title, rather than comply with Fox new's ignorance, they've confused the Electron Volt, a measure of energy, with the Volt, a measure of potential difference, THOSE FOOLS!

@14, I'm puzzled by the appellation you threw from my comment, which simply described what was actually happening, in a context that was relevant. It's disappointing to read a comment like this, and like the ones by @15 and @19. It is exactly this misconception of science, of scientists, and the lack of respect for intelligence in general that is at the heart of multiple issues faced by human beings, and by the US in particular. If we are to survive long into the future, it will take more than a casual interest in science or math. What we need is for people to understand the importance of advanced education and scientific literacy, and to get involved. Simply labeling someone something so unkind, or spreading myths about science or scientists, does nothing to make the world a better place. And every one of us shares the responsibility for doing so.

@28, I appreciate the effort, care, and thought in your comments, so I'll take some time to try and explain.

@14 is reminding you that humor and self-deprecation are the usual custom here, and that perhaps you are taking this a bit too seriously. He was also objecting to your well-meaning, but somewhat patronizing tone.

@15 was pointing out that focusing too sharply on the intellect can lead one to ignore the wider human experience. Wisdom suffers.

And @19 was bringing up the fact that scientists are human, and so subject to the social and psychological stresses and imperfections that we all are. In other words, scientists, like all of us, are very capable of lying to themselves and enforcing group-think, and thus perhaps endangering us all. Albeit with the best intentions. We know instinctively that these flaws are exacerbated by lack of humility, patience, and balance.

Which is why your comment is scarier than anything on the news.

@28, reading that over I realize I'm being a real a-hole. Sorry. I really do appreciate your comment. I could use a little wisdom and humility myself.

ya 3.5 trillion volts, but at how many amps?

When this baby gets up and running, the result is going to be a window that pops up explaining that we've been living in a computer simulation and that our experiments have exceeded the level of the simulation and basically we win. Or lose because they'll just shut us down and start up a new one.

or not, whatever, who cares.

I got drunk,
like never before
didn't score
but then again,
I'm no whore

(need a poet?
I'm a safe bet)

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