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Science

LHC Reaches Record Energy 347

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the spinning-and-spinning dept.
toruonu writes "Yesterday evening the Large Hadron Collider at CERN for the first time accelerated protons in both directions of the ring to 1.18 TeV. Even though the 1 TeV barrier per beam was first broken a week ago, this marks the first time that the beam was in the machine in both directions at the same time, allowing possibly for collisions at a center of mass energy of 2.36 TeV. Although the test lasted mere minutes, it was enough to have detectors record the very first events at 2.36 TeV. LHC passes Tevatron (the particle collider at Fermilab that operates at 1.96 TeV) and becomes the highest energy particle collider in the world (so far it was effectively just the highest energy storage ring...)"
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LHC Reaches Record Energy

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  • by oldspewey (1303305) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @10:26AM (#30377248)
    ... for certain values of "solved"
  • by CrimsonAvenger (580665) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @10:40AM (#30377394)

    Lately I've been wondering how worthwhile attempts to e.g. stop climate change are when, if Kurzweil is right, we'll hit the Singularity in only a couple of decades and then all of humanity's environmental and technological problems may well be solved.

    It's called "minimizing downside risk".

    Which is a fancy way of saying "well, and what if the Singularity does NOT occur on schedule?"

    Personally, I don't think anyone is taking the whole "global warming" thing seriously yet - they're just posturing with another unenforceable (and largely meaningless) Treaty meant to placate the global warming lobby while otherwise doing not very much at all.

  • by mea37 (1201159) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @10:47AM (#30377468)

    The LHC uses 120MW [web.cern.ch], but if you really want to slant the numbers in your favor we can go with the 180MW consumed by the entire CERN complex.

    If you wanted to power millions (we'll say 2M, since that's the lowest number that can be called "millions") of homes and businesses, you could only give each one 90W. My modest-sized, well-insulated, gas-heated, largely-flourescent-lighted house consumes roughly 1kW (1000W).

    So now that we have the hyperbole out of the way, certainly LHC consumes a lot of power. If you hadn't been greedy, you could've said "could power thousands of homes and businesses" (and left off the assertion that there was some time multiplier involved), and that's true.

    However, willingness to spend energy on physics is only in conflict with wanting to conserve energy if either (1) the value of the physics fails to outweigh the value of the power consumed, or (2) there is a more energy-efficient way to do the physics.

    Perhaps you think the physics isn't worth doing; those funding it disagree. That does not make them hypocrits.

    If you have a more efficient design for the LHC, I'm sure many people would love to see it.

    Oh, and there's only one LHC whereas there are millions of homes, millions of vehicles, millions of offices in the world. In other words, millions of opportunities to make incremental energy improvemnts that would cumulatively offset far more power than all of the particle accelerators in the world consume, without the need to sacrifice scientific progress (or much of anything, really).

  • by mea37 (1201159) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @10:59AM (#30377616)

    That's right, Citizen, don't worry about your problems. Just go be a good consumer and enjoy life; everything will be taken care of for you by the Great Tin God. As if by magic Technology will sweep in and save the day, with no need for you to change or contribute in any way.

    Oh, and don't worry; mere mortals cannot dig a hole so deep that Technology can't solve it. You can't do so much damage in the next 20 or 30 years, give or take, to face catastrophy before the coming of the Great Tin God. Your folly certainly can't interfere with His coming - and have faith, He is coming!

    Give. Me. A. Break.

    If not for humans striving to solve significant problems, there would be no technological advancement, and any Singularity that we might imagine coming would never be. That's if the whole Singularity idea isn't crap to start with (of which I am not convinced).

    Perhaps an aphorism will help: Have faith, but row toward shore.

  • Re:Still? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by drsquare (530038) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @11:06AM (#30377672)

    On the other hand, I think /. might be overdoing it a bit regarding news on the subject.

    If a few years back we could have an article every time WoW gained a subscriber, or every time someone at Google farted, or some pirate got busted, I think we can have an article when a particle physics record is broken.

  • by Ch_Omega (532549) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @11:33AM (#30377950) Journal
    http://spaceweather.com/ [spaceweather.com] mentions it..
  • by arminw (717974) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @11:46AM (#30378074)

    ...Global warming carries with it a huge risk of reducing food supplies....

    That is completely and utterly false. Most plants, including most crops grow better when it's warmer and moister. If every last bit of ice on earth melted, it might raise the ocean level a few feet, but there would be vast areas of earth that would then be agriculturally productive, whereas now they are frozen wasteland or desert. Greenland would be once again a green land, covered with forests similar to what is on the east coast of North America today.

    If such warming did happen, which the data in the last 10 years refutes, it would be generally good for humanity as a whole. This is especially true if the warming happened over a century or more, so that coastal areas and others could adapt.

    It is nonsensical how almost everybody automatically assumes that global warming, even if it were happening, is universally bad. There are very few things on this earth that are either all good or all bad, but it is always a mixture of the two.

  • by pz (113803) on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @12:39PM (#30378714) Journal

    The summary makes it sound like there's some immense wall that must be climed or broken in order to pass 1 TeV. There is no barrier at 1 TeV, but rather an arbitrary threshold put there by humans because the numeric representation of that energy level has a lot of zeros in the scale we happen to use. LHC did not pass a barrier, but a threshold.

    This is science, and important science, so it's critical to get it right. Especially so for the non-scientific public.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 09, 2009 @12:52PM (#30378820)

    No, it was written by the man who singlehandedly fought off invading armies and built all the roads in the country - ie a fucktard like the OP.

I've never been canoeing before, but I imagine there must be just a few simple heuristics you have to remember... Yes, don't fall out, and don't hit rocks.

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