Large Hadron Collider

Discussion in 'Science' started by Edstructicon, May 14, 2008.

  1. ewok85

    ewok85 Member

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    Nothing short of massive - Its not like they'll be making new TVs or some sort of consumer product, the knowledge that will be gained from the experiments will confirm or change our understanding of physics as a whole.
     
  2. dakiller

    dakiller (Oscillating & Impeding)

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    Semiconductors were born out of the quantum mechanics research of the early 20th century, and I'm sure there were plenty of people who didn't really understand it and thought was a complete waste of time back then as well. Yet the people doing the research probably didn't have any idea what it could be used for but they did it only to see how the world/universe works, and useful real world applications just followed on later and we eventually got the semiconductor.

    Science is fundamentally about discovering how the world works and furthering our collective knowledge, the only goal of the LHC is to get a better understanding of how stuff works at the sub-atomic particle level. There are no end benefit in mind, just a furthering of our understanding, though anything useful will eventually filter through but we cannot know what that will be until we actually perform the experiments and analyse the results

    It's such a shame there are so many people who have no idea how science works
     
  3. Whisper

    Whisper Member

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    I was thinking how lucky Kate McAlpine was to have a name that could be transmogrified into a really cool online nick (Alpine Kat).

    If we do find it, don't the floodgates open to a whole host of other problems?

    That is to say, the precious Standard Model may remain intact, but we're fucked on a whole bunch of other things, that require a totally different answer the Standard Model is incapable of providing, or at least that is how I understand it.
     
  4. silverfish

    silverfish Member

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    Splitting the atom was also pretty useless at the time, and had no practical applications when it finally happened either. There's no way to tell what applications are going to come out of such pure science, but you need the theory and discovery to happen first, and then the practical scientists get to go to town looking at ways these discoveries can be used in the real world.
    People could be looking back in 100 years and saying "Wow, if the incongruously big hadron collider hadn't discovered the Pizza particle there is no way we would have instantaneous pizza teleportation now."

    Mmmm...
     
  5. proffesso

    proffesso Member

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    im suprised people are questioning the pursuit of science and answers to questions...I mean, really wtf?
     
  6. slipkord

    slipkord Member

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    About the LHC's unfortunate equipment failure, this Arstechnica article mentions a paragraph on Fermilab's Tevatron.

    Its much smaller than the LHC - but is it really plausible to think it can prove/disprove the Higgs-Boson particle theory before LHC's high-energy collisions can be resumed? I thought the LHC was the one and only hope that scientists have w.r.t. Higgs-Boson at this point in time.
     
  7. Dark_Greg

    Dark_Greg Member

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    from what i heard, the Fermilab facility has a "slim" chance of proving super-symetry (another one of the LHC's big targets) before the LHC, so i guess it could POSSIBLY find other things before the LHC....the LHC is just a really beefy colider, which ups the chances of finding stuff...)
     
  8. FatBoyNotSoSlim

    FatBoyNotSoSlim Member

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    Goth et al, whens the new date for doomsday? :lol:

    I thought it was sometime this month?
     
  9. underskore

    underskore Member

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    the doomsday you are thinking of is probably still a good month (or 3) away due to the problem.
     
  10. The Sculpturer

    The Sculpturer (Banned or Deleted)

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    If they cost $45M to fix and ruled unfit for use for 6 months then yes!
    http://www.news.com.au/technology/story/0,25642,24668246-5014108,00.html

    Wow must be good experimenting with other peoples money. ;)
     
  11. underskore

    underskore Member

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    even at 45M to fix thats still only ~ 1 third of a percent of the total cost... barely a blip on the accountants radar.
     
  12. Goth

    Goth Grumpy Member

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    CERN is the European Organisation for Nuclear Research.
     
  13. The Sculpturer

    The Sculpturer (Banned or Deleted)

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    True, but at the same time $45M is $45M.
    The 6 month delay before testing can even begin is also disappointing.
    The LHC may well become a scientific marvel, but atm imo its a costly experiment in itself let alone any results produced.
     
  14. Lucifers Mentor

    Lucifers Mentor Member

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    Do you object to the Australian Synchrotron? How about the Japanese one? The American ones?

    Lets see, who has used those Synchrotrons, and what have they given us, nothing right, because they're just big atom smashers, the LHC is just the biggest yet. This purely scientific endeavor has given us, amongst other things, better tasting chocolate and more efficient jet engines. Both are things, you probably will benefit from.

    Just like research into nuclear fission and nuclear fusion gave us/will give us nothing. What about astronomy, object to that? How about materials science research, we don't need that, all we get is bulletproof fabrics, superconductors and solar cells, nothing REAL people care about :rolleyes:. Chemistry? We don't need that! Physics :shock: - who honestly cares about X-ray diffraction, acoustics, crystalography, etc. etc., who cares, we don't need that!

    :rolleyes:

    Look, object to it all you want, thats your opinion, but the LHC is just one small dip into the big pool of money spent on scientific research. All of it is a gamble, because nothing is certain in science and you cant guarantee a result, but look at all the amazing things science has given us. If we are to live in a world where scientific endeavors are quashed because they might cost us a bit of money, then that sounds like a world I'd rather not live in.
     
  15. The Sculpturer

    The Sculpturer (Banned or Deleted)

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    No need to turn into a drama queen, im specifically commenting on the LHC and yes you may have detected my cynicism for this project.
    Its actually 9 months out of action with maintenance now until the end of May 09. What happens when they pop another leak next year....shut it down till the following season? Another $45M?

    Im sure i can live without better tasting chocolate for now.. :)
     
  16. rambunctious

    rambunctious Member

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    It's not necessarily going to take nine months to fix. They were going to turn it off over the winter anyway because France needs the power to keep warm :). The fault occurred close enough to the normal winter maintenance shutdown, so they just turned it off and began repairs a bit earlier than expected.

    I have no idea how you think the money that was spent on the LHC could have benefited you in any other way. It's not like they were taking cash out of your wages each week to pay for it.
     
  17. Assasinator_2

    Assasinator_2 (Banned or Deleted)

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    Fuck fuck lets horde all our money and never spend it because if we spend it, we don't have it any more!

    You're making a strawman argument. Please stop it.
     
  18. SithLord

    SithLord Member

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    Plus that fact that once running, this thing will be running for YEARS !

    I mean, Fermilab has been running for 15+ years, even if they get 10 years out of the LHC, a 1 year delay isn't gonna hurt anyone (considering that fact they spent some 20 years designing/building the frakkin' thing !)
     
  19. SLATYE

    SLATYE SLATYE, not SLAYTE

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    I can think of many worse ways to waste money. Conroy's internet filter, for example, or the war in Iraq. I doubt that we'll ever see anything useful from either of those (especially the first one), and they both cost a lot more than repairs to the LHC (the war in Iraq will obviously have far higher costs than the entire LHC project, from start to finish).

    Even if the LHC never produced any useful data, it'd still be a better way of using money than the above examples.
     
  20. tornado33

    tornado33 Member

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    Gee the repair bill is big, and so is the downtime.

    link

    REPAIRING the giant particle collider built to simulate the "Big Bang" could cost up to 35 million Swiss francs ($45 million), the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) says.
    Announcing a further delay to the Large Hadron Collider's resumption, now expected in summer, CERN spokesman James Gillies said repairs will cost 15 million Swiss francs ($19.2 million), and spare parts would cost another 10-20 million Swiss francs ($12.8 million $25.6 million)- .

    The massive collider, the largest and most complex machine ever made, has already cost 10 billion Swiss francs ($12.8bn)to build, supported by CERN's 20 European member states and other nations including the United States and Russia.

    "We will not be going to our member states asking for more money, we will deal with it within the current CERN budget," Mr Gillies said.

    The collider was designed to recreate conditions just after the Big Bang, believed by most cosmologists to have created the universe 13.7 billion years ago.

    It sends beams of sub-atomic particles to smash into each other at nearly the speed of light.


    Physicists plan to look at the results of those explosions for new or previously unseen particles that could unlock more secrets of science.

    Scientists started it up with great fanfare in September, firing beams of proton particles around its 27km underground tunnel. But nine days later they were forced to shut it down when an electrical fault caused a helium leak.

    Mr Gillies said that helium leak caused "quite considerable mechanical damage to the accelerator".

    Repairing it will require 53 of the 57 magnets in the collider's tunnel, buried under the Swiss-French border near Geneva, to be removed and then re-installed.

    Twenty-eight have already come out, and all the magnets should be back in place by the end of March, Mr Gillies said. CERN now expects the machine to be powered up again for tests by June, after which particle beams can be sent around again.

    "We don't have a precise date for it yet," the spokesman said.

    CERN had originally said the machine would be restarted in the spring.
     

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