Many physicists are passionate about the existence of Supersymmetry and Superpartners.
There are, according to the theory of supersymmetry, MANY kinds of matter which cannot be seen but they may exist and these particles are called "superpartners." These particles have never been seen directly in spite of all of the efforts by particle physicists to detect them. With the Large Hadron Collider, which is now operational, there is the hope that supersymmetry will be detected.
Built at a cost of billions of dollars, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research in Geneva, Switzerland, which in collaboration with hundreds of universities and laboratories world-wide has the potential to detect new particles and create micro black holes. It is situated in the Alps, 570 feet under-ground at the Swiss-French border.
The Large Hadron Collider is enormous. It is 27 kilometers (17 miles) in circumference and contains 10,000 ultra-powerful large magnets to repel particles to speeds approaching nature's speed limit - the speed of light. (The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator.)
When beams of protons smash into each other there is so much energy compressed into a tiny space that formerly unknown matter is being created, even if only momentarily --- like it was at the time of origin of the cosmos. It may even result in micro-black holes very much like the primordial black holes created during the Big Bang.
"Two streams of protons, traveling in opposite directions at about 99.999999 percent of the speed of light, will collide head on. Each collision will contain up to 14 trillion electron volts, or 14 thousand giga-electron volts, of energy. So far, the most energetic collisions studied at a particle accelerator, at the Tevatron at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, have had less than two thousand giga-electron volts. The Tevatron is an impression machine, the the LHC is a big step forward," says Dan Hooper, in Dark Cosmos in Search of Our Universe's Mission Mass and Energy - (2006 - Smithsonian Books) Dan is Associate Scientist in the Theoretical Astrophysics Group at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Chicago.
Dan writes: "For more than 30 years, physicists have been studying a class of theories known as supersymmetry. These theories postulate that the two types of particles found in our universe (bosons and fermions) cannot exist without each other. According to supersymmetry, for each type of fermion which exists, there must also exist a boson with many of the same properties - known as its superpartner...If supersymmetric were to be discovered, it would be perhaps the biggest discovery in physics since anti-matter was confirmed to exist in 1932... In many supersymmetric theories, the lightest superpartner particle is stable and weakly interacting, making it a good candidate for the dark matter of our universe. In particular, the lightest of four particles known as neutralinos is a very promising possibility." (Dan Hooper)
Will superpartner particles appear as new supersymmetry particles and annihilate other matter in the universe? Will these black holes suck us all into them? Will the Earth cease to exist? What effect will the LHC have on our Solar System - on our Universe?
99.9% of all the species that ever lived on Earth are now extinct. We are in the Holocene epoch often referred to as the 6th major extinction period for life on planet Earth.It Can Happen Tomorrow or in 1,000 years or TODAY!
Mass extinction are evolutionary opportunities by eliminating dominate species. We are currently the dominate species on Earth. It has been suggested that we probably owe our species dominance to the last major mass extinction, the K/T event that wiped out dinosaurs and open up a nitch for small mammals to become bigger and to become diversified which led ultimately to our species and its overuse of resources and disregard for the many other species which have become extinct because of our maladroit use and miss-use of the power we have wielded against the environment. I believe in spite of any attempt we make now to correct these mistakes, it is too late to alter our destiny. We are quickly approaching a catoslismic end not just for ourselves but as many other species as we can take with us.
"Prior to the dispersion of humans across the earth, extinction generally occurred at a continuous low rate, mass extinctions being relatively rare events. Starting approximately 100,000 years ago, and coinciding with an increase in the numbers and range of humans, species extinctions have increased to a rate unprecedented since the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event. This is known as the Holocene extinction event and is at least the sixth such extinction event. Some experts have estimated that up to half of presently existing species.." (URL: http://life6.beyondgenes.com/)
"There are differing estimates of the number of major mass extinctions in the last 540 million years, ranging from as few as five to more than twenty discrete extinctions. These differences stem primarily from the threshold chosen for describing an extinction event as "major"; and, what set of data one chooses as the best measure of past diversity." (URL: http://beyondgenes.com/)
There are limits on resources and a constant competition for them. Greed and irresponsibility is built-in to human behavior. Eventually everything we influence will become extinct. Some faster than others.
Just when we think we may begin to really enjoy our lives or should - or at least we being to partially figure it all out and we plan for a better conclusion, SHIT HAPPENS and what was isn't. Plans are something someone else makes. Happiness is as elusory as life is ephemeral. Our lives are swift moments riding a wave of gravity curving space-time.
There are black hole and gamma rays headed right for us!
The Earth can be swallowed up a black hole. A black hole traveling in our Milky Way Galaxy at four times faster than any stars around it, an event invisible yet there is ample evidence of it's existence. It is also the result of a Supernova, the death of an exploding star.
This particular Black Hole is about 6,000 light years away and it is headed this way.
"This is the first black hole found to be moving fast through the plane of our galaxy," said Felix Mirabel, a researcher at the French Atomic Energy Commission.
So, how close will it come to the Earth and when. Sometime in the next 230 million years and likely won't be closer than 1,000 light years but know that there are about a million of these black holes in just our own galaxy AND there are a lot of exploding stars some of which becoming supernovaes spewing death rays and heavy matter across the universe.
The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) was scheduled to be turned on last year but delayed several times (the last time in September 2009) now expected to be started up in November of 2009. Critics are worried about a black hole which might swallow up the Earth.
The particle collider will test predictions about dark matter and attempt to detect the "Higgs Boson" - sometimes referred to as the "God Particle" by smashing protons at trillions of degrees and 99.99% of the speed of light.
LHC has been dubbed the Doomsday Device and the Big Bang Machine. It is the world's most powerful atom smasher ever built. As noted above, 20,000 magnets along the 17 mile tunnel will power particle collisions and if everything works according to plan, detectors will observe new elements never before seen or analyzed. It will take years to evaluate all of the experimental data obtained by these tests. As noted previously technical difficulties caused a shut down of the work until a new start up date in the spring of 2009. Some of the problems have been blamed on bad cabling, faulty soldering and leakage of tonnes of ultra-cold liquid helium into the tunnels causing a rise above the magnet operating temperature of 1.9 K. Some are calling the rush to restart reckless, irresponsible - and potentially could annihilate life on the planet.
It is expected the Large Hadron Collider will not only be capable of creating new particles, it will also create miniature Big Bangs, Micro Black Holes, Strangelets, Antimatter (which was annihilated at the time of the Big Bang - and ALSO other potentially cataclysmic phenomena...
"The LHC is a dangerous gamble as CERN physicist Alvaro De Rújula in the BBC LHC documentary, 'The Six Billion Dollar Experiment', incredibly admits quote, "Will we find the Higgs particle at the LHC? That, of course, is the question. And the answer is, science is what we do when we don't know what we're doing." And CERN spokesmodel Brian Cox follows with this stunning quote, "the LHC is certainly, by far, the biggest jump into the unknown." (Quoted from http://Sane.Science.Org)
There is litigation against 20 countries, including the United States to keep the collider shut down for fear the LHC would create a black hole which will swallow the Earth.
Super solar flares, exploding stars, asteroids and meteors and perhaps the LHC all pose a possible threat to Earth and this solar system. Nothing is forever!
Could the Large Hadron Collider Swallow the Earth?
There is some concern, whether justified or not, in the media, on the NET and in the courts about the safety of particle collisions at the new Large Hadron Collider. Problems have hampered turning it on but even after it is started it will be awhile before the energy is turned up. The LHC as noted here elsewhere is the world's largest and most powerful particle accelerator.
There is a very real expectation that micro black holes are going to be produced by the LHC including several hypothetical particles including Strangelets. So far technical problems have plagued the planned start-up of the LHC. The new estimated date for starting it up is in November of 2009.
Independent scientists have undertaken a risk analysis for CERN and their report issued in 2003 concluded no discernible threat. A second review in 2008, like another report for the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) reaffirmed the first report that there is "no conceivable threat" from these particle colliders.
These reports were prepared by physicists who were not involved in the LHC experiments.
"The report, prepared by a group of physicists not involved in the LHC experiments, reaffirmed the safety of the LHC collisions in light of further research conducted since the 2003 assessment. It was reviewed and endorsed by a CERN committee of 20 external scientists and by the Executive Committee of the Division of Particles & Fields of the American Physical Society, and was later published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Physics G by the UK Institute of Physics, which also endorsed its conclusions. The report ruled out any doomsday scenario at the LHC: the physical conditions and events that will be created in the LHC experiments occur naturally in the universe without hazardous consequences." (Wikipedia)
I'm not worried about the Large Hadron Collider. And the probability of being impacted by an Asteroid or Meteor - or super-Earthquake is less than the probability of winning a state lottery. I think LHC it is an exciting project and look forward to advances in science and what we may learn from it.
How Significant Are We?Not
I am more concerned about Global Warming for causing an "extinction level event" but I don't think we have enough motivation to do anything about it. And if we let Climate Change beat us, we probably deserve it. AND starting over just doesn't seem like such a bad idea to me anyway.
"We are, if anything, a small bit of pollution in the Universe dominated not by matter such as that which makes us up, but rather matter and energy that appear to be completely different from anything we have ever observed on Earth. If we did not feel cosmically insignificant before, we should now." (Hooper - ibid)
The main objective of the LHC is to affirm as well as explore the limits of the Standard Model of particle physics, unify theories of science and discover the many other secrets of the cosmos. First planned for providing data a year ago, it has been delayed due to technical problems with the hardware. It is now scheduled to be turned on and start smashing particles in November of 2009. Originally the plan was to start small but some have encouraged a full start up with energy at 14 TeV (center-of-mass) collisions. The capability of LHC is about 7 times greater than the faster particle collider currently working at Fermilabs.
Some physicists are concerned over the safety of LHC. I'm excited about the potential discoveries. But, I'm not a physicist and I can't have a valid "informed" opinion about the risk. Is it worth the risk? I think so.
What are the opponents to LHC saying? They assert that the LHC has the potential to create micro black holes (comparable to primordial black holes) which could grow into massive black holes and release radiation which may be dangerous to carbon based life. There are various speculations of doomsday scenarios (there always is). There is the expectation that many theoretical particles will be created, i.e. strangelets, magnetic monopoles, Ed Whitten (the greatest scientific mind since Einstein) type "M-theory" membranes or vacuum bubbles.
While some are fearful, including Toby Ord of the Humanity Institute where he is a research associate, others, such as Sir Martin Rees, the famous English astrophysicist who wrote about it in his book, Our Final Century: Will the Human Race Survive the Twenty-First Century? - says the risk is small - at the "upper limit" only 1 in 50 million for the probability of a catastrophic "end of time" as we know it (does time really exist?).
We may know a lot more than we did a decade ago but there is very much we don't know. We don't even have a clue about the universe; that is, what constitutes over 90% of it.
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The InterNUT has changed exponentially from what it once was. It has lost its usefulness [my view]. I'm considering a VPN here for those who are serious about discussing the mysteries of life - in lieu of sound-bites and wasted space and time on social networking and blog sites. If you are interested in critical "intelligent" discussion, you may like to apply for access. Let me know. - firstname.lastname@example.org
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