Switzerland – UC Professor Marjorie Shapiro and some thousands of other scientists gathered on Monday to give the Hadron Collider its first whirl. This supercollider is $10 billion project to be used for recreating mini-universes (never did we think we’d use the word ‘universe’ in a plural form), kinda. Physicists claim this test run was a success, and are excited for the implications of future experimentation. Meanwhile, cloggers stumble through the science-speak and smirk at the comical details:

*Physicists have so far succeeded in sending particles around a 17-mile underground ring. It’s like Chuck E. Cheese for grown-ups.

*The Hadron Collider’s next small step/giant leap will be to smash these particles into each other and hopefully form clouds of smaller particles. Not a big deal, except for, you know, cracking the code to the mystery of the universe. Think of it as a Small Bang.

*One side effect of the supercollider is the creation of microscopic black holes, which we think is like some kind of nightmarish sci-fi oxymoron. Don’t worry, KTVU reports that the black holes would be “too short lived to pose a danger to the scientists or the planet.” Good, because the planet was only an afterthought for us, too.

*Did we mention that these black holes will also help further scientists’ understanding of gravity? Apparently there’s more to gravity than rotation and falling objects.

Shapiro will watch the results from her office here at Berkeley. Party at Shapiro’s!

Image Source: deletem3 under Creative Commons
Berkeley Scientists Excited About New Swiss Supercollider [KTVU]

DiAnna Stanich said:
Jan 15, 2009 at 8:35 pm

Exactly what city is this underground
atom machine in Switzerland?

Elder Lyons said:
Jan 15, 2009 at 9:52 pm

We call it Zion. It’s near the earth’s core, where it’s still warm. At night, you can hear the sentinels prodding the city’s spherical walls with their tentacles.