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The Large Hadron Collider

September 13th, 2008 8 comments
The tunne of the LHC

The tunnel of the LHC

The Large Hadron Collider or short LHC is a particle Collider which has been build in Geneva, Swiss near the French borders.

It’s the most powerful particle collider yet build by humanity. Why I underlined it? Well, our universe is a much more powerful particle collider. E.g. every second our atmosphere is bombed by particles at billion times higher energy than LHC or every future human build accelerator can reach. These particles come form cosmic background radiation which is everywhere in space.

I recently read about people being scared to death for the LHC creating black holes, strangelets or other exotic matter which could destroy the earth. But seriously: If it could, why does Earth still exist when it’s bombed by an equivalent of 10,000 LHC experiments by cosmic radiation every second? And that for billions of years now.

I just can underline it again: The proton-proton collusions produced by LHC are at an Energies around 14 T eV. Each proton at 7 TeV. This is just 0,0000011214 Joule.
That equals of a Mosquito at 4 km/h (Just transform E = \frac{1}{2} mv^2 and insert the Energy and mass. A mosquite weights around 2.5 mg). But the whole beam of course contains billions of protons. To be exaclty: 283,040,627,000,000 (Equals 0.00000000047 grams of protons). All these protons together come to a total Energy of 317 Mega Joule. An aicraft carrier (88 tons) at 5.6 knots has the same energy.

But to be serious: Just one collusion between one and another proton can create new particles (according to E = mc^2). This is one of the fundamentals of physics. One event has the Energy of 14 TeV (the Mosquito) but all together are the Intensity (Particles created on every collusion)

You can imagine this like the following: Think about a car at 100 km/h on a highway driving into a wall (which holds this single collusion). This collusion now produces something (At LHC new particles). Now think about a billion of cars driving into the wall. The wall can’t resist of course. But every single collusion just equals one discrete Energy where the overall Energy of course is giant.

That’s also why all protons combine in the beam can easily shoot holes into iron plates. But still one single proton is quite harmless.

Think about it.

Categories: Physics Tags: ,