The How the Large Hadron Collider works.



How does the Large Hadron Collider work?

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is a magnificent invention of science that, depending on which school of thought you believe, will either unveil the deep mysteries of the universe or be the end of all mankind. The LHC is buried deep underground, 100 meters below the earth’s surface, and lies under the border of France and Switzerland. Its purpose, in simple terms, is to gather the earth’s smallest particles and then force them to all collide. This collision is meant to replicate the events of The Big Bang Theory, and afterwards, the remaining particles are then examined to help scientists finally determine, once and for all, how the universe came to be. While many scientists believe that this is the greatest machine to ever be invented and will be the tool used for many scientific discoveries yet to come, others believe that this machine, while unarguably the largest machine ever made, is sure to create scientific catastrophes such as black holes and polar demagnetization, which would ultimately extinguish life on earth. No matter which theory scientists believe, they are all competing against each other to be the first to find new discoveries about the LHC and about the results that it can produce. No matter how you look at it, this is definitely one of the biggest events in scientific history yet to date.

The Big Bang, Matter, and the LHC

Scientists have believed for years in the Big Bang Theory and how the earth was created from the matter left behind by the Big Bang. That theory is based on the theory that when protons are forced together in a brutal collision, the protons break apart into atomic sub particles. These sub particles are not very strong at all and don’t even exist for a second before they deteriorate or join with other sub particles. The Big Bang Theory suggests that the earliest universe was created from these sub particles and that as time evolved, and the universe cooled and grew, the tiny sub particles joined together to form larger pieces of matter, that consisted of protons and neurons. It is this earliest matter that scientists have spent years studying and theorizing about and the LHC will help them to understand this matter better. First though to understand how it will be able to help them to do that, you must first understand what the scientists now believe to be the truth about matter and the universe.

Scientists have already proposed a theory, known as the Standard Model, which explains how the early universe worked, how it was actually built, and what it looked like. This model tries to explain the matter that all of the earth is founded on. The quantum theory, as well as Einstein’s theory of relatively, are both used in the Standard Model. All of the forces of the universe, except gravity, are also included in the standard model and these forces are: strong nuclear force, weak nuclear force, and the electromagnetic force. Scientists use the Standard Model to make assumptions about the universe and to then test those assumptions through experimentation. Many of these assumptions have been proven as true already. But the Standard Model also includes other theories that have not been proven as of yet such as the Higgs boson particle. This particle, while it would answer many questions that still revolve around matter, is a theoretical particle, meaning that its existence has not yet been proven.

Some of the questions scientists have about mass and matter could be answered by the Higgs boson particle. It is still unknown as to why some matter has mass and other matter, such as neutrinos, have no mass. Scientists have created many theories as to why this is but the Higgs mechanism explains it as some particles may have corresponding mediating forces, which would explain the existence of mass in some particles and none in others. Because the Higgs boson particle is not officially in existence and therefore, cannot be used in true theories, many scientists hope that the LHC will help to prove the existence of the Higgs boson particle and help to explain it further. Others think that the LHC may uncover answers that haven’t even yet been considered.

But this is only one question pertaining to matter that scientists have. Another mystery is the difference between matter and antimatter and it’s hoped that the LHC will provide more insight into antimatter. When the universe was first in existence, matter and energy were attached to each other. When the two were separated, particles of matter and antimatter destroyed each other. Had there been equal amounts of both, they simply would have taken equal parts and life would never have existed. However, because there was a tiny bit more matter than there was antimatter, the universe is what we know it to be today. One of the hopes for the LHC is that it will create antimatter and keep it long enough that scientists will be able to study it and use it to help determine how the universe came into existence. They’re also hoping that the LHC will help to explain why there was a tiny bit more matter than there was antimatter.

But yet another type of matter exists that scientists want to know more about and this is dark matter. It’s believed by looking at other galaxies and other parts of the universe that there is more matter in existence than what is visible to us. It’s believed that what we can see makes up about four percent of the matter in the entire universe and that this matter, combined with dark matter, make up twenty-five percent of the matter in the universe. The other three-quarters of what the universe is comprised of, and what we cannot see, is referred to as dark energy. Dark energy is another hypothetical theory that has yet to be proven. Scientists are hoping that the LHC will be able to help answer questions about dark matter and dark energy and may once again bring about suggestions and theories that have not yet been considered.

The Large Hadron Collider

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the Large Hadron Collider.

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