Discussion in 'Astronomy, Exobiology, & Cosmology' started by __your_Zahir_, Aug 10, 2008.

1. ### __your_Zahir_Registered Member

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(I apologize but I am unable to post links because of lacking a certain post count, but a search in Google or any other search engine for the Large Hadron Collider should provide results)

Unfortunately, as a sophomore in college with no experience in physics, I have almost no background knowledge concerning this whole experiment. Really, from a layman's view, all I've gathered is they are fucking around with some potentially earth-altering stuff that could (under extremely unlikely but possible circumstances) create a black hole to destroy all of earth and its inhabitants. Yes, I'm obsessed with the end of the world and science taking its talents a little too far, so of course I'm biased in my thought processes. If anyone could give me further explanation on this topic to ease my worried mind, that would be wonderful. As is, I'm planning on getting everything I can done before Sept. 10's destruction of my being. :]

3. ### OilIsMasteryBannedBanned

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Large Hardon Colliders can be very dangerous...

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mm hmm

7. ### brokenpowerRegistered Senior Member

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I don't think we have anything to worry about

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9. ### prometheusviva voce!Moderator

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The LHC will not endanger the earth, and there are certainly more pressing concerns caused by man, like global warming for example.

The LHC disaster scenarios generally split into micro black holes and strangelets. The overwhelming probability is that micro black holes will not be produced at the LHC because there is simply not enough energy. The theories that predict MBH's are highly conjectural and call for large extra dimensions (of order 1 mm in size) that we haven't observed. Even if black holes are formed at the LHC (which is a huge if) they will immediately evaporate via Hawking radiation and so will be harmless.

The other suggestion is a strangelet being formed that causes all matter on earth to be converted to strangelets because it is somehow more stable than ordinary matter. It is very unlikely this will happen because over the universes evolution matter should end up in the most stable possible state, and we are not made of strangelets. Also, if strangelets were likely we would almost certainly have seen them already at RHIC and we haven't.

The danger of the LHC is a work of fiction, dreamed up by wannabe physicists with too much time and not enough work to do. It is not based on reality as we observe it. If you don't believe me, a committee of physicists were recently commissioned to investigate the safety of the LHC, and came to precisely these conclusions. Their report is here.

10. ### __your_Zahir_Registered Member

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I do agree there are more pressing concerns by man... I'm currently trying to figure out what my role will be in the mass re-education of humans.

I definitely appreciate the link, I hadn't seen that report from the collaboration of physicists. It acted as a "Shhhh, there there dear. You'll be fine." The only things that still make me uneasy are the words "unlikely", "almost certainly", and "if they exist at all". Seems almost as generally unsure as a religious claim.

11. ### prometheusviva voce!Moderator

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The chance of the world being destroyed by the LHC is vanishingly small, but it is not zero so physicists will use words like unlikely, which in this context can be treated synonymously with impossible.

One of my office mates uses this analogy: Say we as a species have turned kettles on 100 billion times in history. We can say with certainty that the probability of the earth being destroyed by someone turning a kettle on and causing some unforeseen catastrophic event is less than 1/100 billion, but that is still not zero. Therefore, the earth being destroyed by kettles is not impossible.

We can work out a probability of the LHC destroying the earth and it turns out to be a similar number, ie, there is an an extremely small chance that the LHC will destroy the world, but technically speaking it is still not zero. There really is nothing to worry about with the LHC, with the possible exception that you object to the enormous cost. That however, is a different issue.

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I, too, think that mountains are being made out of molehills.

But even IF all the experts are wrong, there's nothing to worry about. It would all be over even before you knew it had begun.

13. ### Walter L. WagnerCosmic Truth SeekerValued Senior Member

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A number of prominent theorists came up with the idea of strangelets as a more stable form of hadronic matter. A Nobel Prize winner in physics raised the idea in conjunction with safety issues in colliders. I guess they have too much time and not enough work. Same too with all the research groups that have looked for strangelets in nature and lower-energy colliders. Too much time on their hands, and not enough work.

Another danger, of a more common type, currently being analyzed is the possibility of Carbon fusion in the beam-dump should the defocusing magnet fail and the beam heats the Carbon to high temperature. This would be similar to the analysis of Nitrogen fusion in the atmosphere from high-temperature ignition via nuclear bombs. I suspect that it is safe, but the calculations are involved.

I suppose the AMS-2 launch, to search for strangelets, should be scuttled. Likewise, the strangelet searches proposed for ATLAS should be abandoned. No need to examine any of these scenarios, because arm-waving know-it-alls have already dismissed the need to do so, because, according to their gods, strangelets are an impossibility.

14. ### VkothiiBannedBanned

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Rubbish - strange matter, and the search for it is still part of current theories; if they find zero evidence, then we might have to accept, for the now, that strangelets, and strange matter don't exist.

That's called a result.

15. ### ForcemanMay the force be with youRegistered Senior Member

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God is not going to allow this Earth to be destroyed by human hands. These physicists are waisting their time in this meaningless experiment to recreate the conditions proliferated in the Bing Bang(which is fiction).

16. ### AlphaNumericFully ionizedModerator

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Can you link to a few papers? The paper discussed in PhysOrg about such things explicitly stated that the process was self limiting. Not that anyone on the "It'll kill us all!" side noticed.
Are you attempting sarcasm or are you honestly implying they shouldn't have looked for possible phenomena in previous experiments and observations?
Have you got any references? Because the beam packages only contain about 100 billion protons, which is less than $10^{-15}$kg of material and the many thousands of packages in the beam have a total energy of only a few hundred megawatts. Even terawatt lasers are struggling to get anything close to fusion occuring in more easily fused material like deuterium. And on the scales of the amount of material involved it wouldn't be a nuclear blast. Nukes involve more than 10kilos (often a LOT more) of nuclear material (which wants to undergo reaction, unlike Carbon and Nitrogen) and the ~0.1% mass change means that about 1g of energy is released. Scale that down by a factor of $10^{-12}$ and you go from a 10kT explosion to a 10 nano-ton. Which is a milligram explosion. Ouch, watch out people, dumping a 100MW laser into an energy sink might set off an explosion of 1 milligram of nuclear material. Never mind anything in the beams path will be flash boiled, no, the 1 mg explosion is the danger.

Feel free to provide some quantitative back up for your comments, I'm just working on the back of an envelope here but even if I'm out by 3 order of magnitude, 1g of TNT is weaker than a firework.
People have devoted a lot of time and effort into writing a multitude of papers on it. What have you managed? You whine online. You don't show competency in physics, you cannot back up your claims and you're unable to go through the aforementioned published papers to explain their errors, because you don't understand them. I imagine that no safety analysis will satisfy you because you just say "You're wrong" or "But you're not 100%" to anything, irrespective of how much or little you understand, the time and effort put into it and the results reached.

Instead you have to resort to comments like "Arm-waving know-it-alls". But where have you demonstrated you aren't arm waving? For months, if not years, you and I have been crossing paths and I have never seen a single post of yours doing anything quantitative. Just arm waving. Can you provide me with a link to a post of yours, here or elsewhere, which shows quantitative understanding?

I'm also still waiting for you to tell me which one of Paul's papers could possibly be the reason he was nominated for a Nobel Prize. I'm not saying you think it is worth that, but I cannot see a paper which could even remotely be worth it. And as Prometheus commented, nominations are kept secret. So how did Paul know? His claims fall, lacking in justification, even faster than yours.

17. ### OilIsMasteryBannedBanned

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Now tell us how you really feel...

18. ### Walter L. WagnerCosmic Truth SeekerValued Senior Member

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As I mentioned before, I have no idea who nominated him, or why. As to how he learned, I suppose someone had loose lips. And, I haven't gone around reading Paul's papers.

19. ### Walter L. WagnerCosmic Truth SeekerValued Senior Member

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Attempting sarcasm; I thought it was obvious. I suppose I shouldn't drop to that level. Sorry.

As to the fusion potential of the beam dump, as I indicated, I suspect it's not there. But, I do believe it should be analyzed. The energy in a beam, if it dumped without diverting is reportedly equivalent to a air-dropped bomb, or high-speed train [LHC-Wikipedia]. I'll let you get the exact figure. If that were deposited in a very small volume, would it exceed the total energy deposited from the terawatt lasers [you don't give that figure, just the energy deposition rate as being "terawatt"] you reference? I don't know - - why don't you do the calculations and get back to me so we can put that to rest?

Incidentally, I'm told the beam dump at Fermilab is Iron - no fusion potential there with energy release.

Last edited: Aug 11, 2008
20. ### AlphaNumericFully ionizedModerator

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http://lhc-machine-outreach.web.cern.ch/lhc-machine-outreach/beam.htm

Beam energy is 362MJ. And as that page shows, it's enough to melt a ton of copper. That's not much compared to a bomb and nothing compared to a nuke which doesn't just melt things, it vapourises things.

And why did you ignore my requests for references Walter? Don't you have such papers to hand, for when (and if) you go to court?

21. ### prometheusviva voce!Moderator

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AN has already answered this better than I could, but I would like to point out to nuclear physicist Walter Wagner than a strangelet is not strictly baryonic because a baryon is a bound state of quarks, either in triplets like protons and neutrons or pairs like the mesons. A stranglet is a more general object that can be a lot larger than these simple bound states.

To reiterate my question to WW from the Fermilab thread, I'd like to know where Walter Wagner gets off calling himself a nuclear physicist when he is a Biologist or a medical physicist at the closest, especially in the view that I can't find a single paper on nuclear physics written by him on the web.

22. ### StryderKeeper of "good" ideas.Valued Senior Member

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Come on, Physicists have to add a little danger to at least the myth, otherwise people overlook their work and just class it as boring, just look at all the attention their experiment has been getting(..and it should considering the amount of funding pumped into it). It's silly to suggest that they would do things that would jeopardize themselves let alone the planet or universe.

The alternative is of course misinterpretation, lack of education and speculation on the part of those that "believe" such theories. In honesty it's just another event in the universe, another day on your calendar like the one that preceded it or the one about to occur. By all means use the "Potential destruction of the Earth, the Universe and everything in it" to organise parties just remember though not to drink too much because I guarantee the next day you'll wake up with a hangover.

23. ### VkothiiBannedBanned

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You can all relax; I've invoked the necessary incantations and certain agencies have been directed to visit the facility and will, from now on, ensure that none of the mad scientists get near any buttons they shouldn't be pressing.

It's who you know, you know?