particle

Tag archives for particle

Why does Particle Physics matter?

“[S]cience is not a consumption good to be expanded in good times and restricted in bad times. The doing of science as well as the supporting of science is an expression of faith in the future. It would have been possible to have told Newton and Faraday, Maxwell and Einstein, Bohr and Heisenberg that, given…

The Physicist’s Dream Machine

“It is no good to try to stop knowledge from going forward. Ignorance is never better than knowledge.” -Enrico Fermi As you probably know, the Large Hadron Collider — site of discovery of the last fundamental particle in the Standard Model, the Higgs Boson — is the most energetic particle accelerator in the history of…

The Cosmic Speed Limit

“All our sweetest hours fly the fastest.” -Virgil If you’ve been around the block once or twice, you know that the speed of light in a vacuum — 299,792,458 meters-per-second — is the absolute maximum speed that any form of energy in the Universe can travel at. In shorthand, this speed is known as c to…

“If you’re a reporter, the easiest thing in the world is to get a story. The hardest thing is to verify. The old sins were about getting something wrong, that was a cardinal sin. The new sin is to be boring.” -David Halberstam It was only a few months ago that both collaborations at the…

“Other than the laws of physics, rules have never really worked out for me.” -Craig Ferguson Earlier this week, evidence was presented measuring a very rare decay rate — albeit not incredibly precisely — which point towards the Standard Model being it as far as new particles accessible to colliders (such as the LHC) go.…

“This is evidently a discovery of a new particle. If anybody claims otherwise you can tell them they have lost connection with reality.” -Tommaso Dorigo You’ve probably heard the news by now: the Higgs boson — the last undiscovered fundamental particle of nature — has been found. Indeed the news reports just keep rolling in;…

“…the publisher wouldn’t let us call it the Goddamn Particle, though that might be a more appropriate title, given its villainous nature and the expense it is causing.” -Leon Lederman, author of The God Particle The Higgs Boson: you know the deal. It’s the last undiscovered particle in our current picture of all the fundamental…

How “Quantum” is the Big Bang?

There is a very techincal paper this morning by Martin Bojowald that asks the question, How Quantum Is The Big Bang? Let me break it down for you. If you took a look at empty space and zoomed in on it, looking at spaces so small that they made a proton look like a basketball,…

How to Destroy the Entire Universe

Since the dawn of time man has yearned to destroy the sun. – C. M. Burns There’s no need to stop at the Sun, though. Since yesterday was Earth day, I thought it was only appropriate to spend today telling you how not only to destroy the Earth, but to effectively destroy the entire Universe.…

Dark Matter: Anything Practical About It?

Yesterday, my good friend (and SWAB reader) Brian wrote a great comment about the practical reasons to explore space, where he talked about the overall economic impact that Space Exploration has had on the economy, as well as the impact it has had on our knowledge and understanding of the Earth, its environment, and how…