View Full Version : Large Hadron Collider


SS-18 ICBM
Sep 09, 2008, 10:28 AM
With a scheduled test just around the corner, we are reminded again of the existence of the culmination of the efforts of thousand of scientists and engineers into one of the largest scientific experiments in history. It will, of course, grant us insight into the nature and origin of the universe, but what are the possible practical applications of the discoveries to be made from the particle collisions? One possibility is that some observed particle behavior could be used in medicine (to treat and/or to diagnose disease) or in next-generation electronics. Are there any other applications of this data in everyday life?

Metal Alloy Man
Sep 09, 2008, 06:39 PM
Assuming it doesn't kill us all?

Gilder
Sep 09, 2008, 07:10 PM
Film the results for stock footage of explosions? Fulfill natural human curiosity? Just to say "we did it?" :dunno:

Dubai Vol
Sep 09, 2008, 07:26 PM
Time after time, the most valuable investment has proven to be pure research. And time after time, the general public fails to appreciate this fact. "What will it do for ME, NOW?"

If you're lUCKY, it will destroy the earth when they turn it on today, but the chance of that is essentially zero. Shame.

See sig.

SG-17
Sep 09, 2008, 07:30 PM
I hope it blows up, but something small. Maybe just Switzerland, that way we will learn these lessons before we get the really powerful stuff. (IE Fusion, Antimatter, nanites, etc, etc.)
If it does blow it wont be tomorrow, it will be when they first collide two beams on October 21st.

viz
Sep 09, 2008, 07:45 PM
I guess the real world applications will be wide raging but it may be too early to predict what areas will benefit most. Electronics is almost a dead cert, but as with most physics discoveries we will likely see this knowledge being applied right across the board. First and foremost this is about understandig the universe, a nice side effect of that is a better understanding of everything else from the ground up.

Large Hadron Rap:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j50ZssEojtM

:goodjob:

edit: For those interested, the odds of a global catastrophe are estimated at 1 in 50 million...

uppi
Sep 10, 2008, 07:05 AM
Without knowing the rsults it is hard to say, if there will be any real world applications. They really depend on surprising results. If there are no surprises there won't be any applications. Worst case: The LHC confirms the standard model, finds the Higgs-Boson with an acceptable mass and that's it. In that case there won't be any applications.

kulade
Sep 10, 2008, 08:19 AM
All this business is really giving me a hadron.

LucyDuke
Sep 10, 2008, 01:47 PM
One possibility is that some observed particle behavior could be used in medicine (to treat and/or to diagnose disease) or in next-generation electronics.

I don't really see how a subatomic particle could be useful in medicine. Medical science doesn't really get subatomic now, I don't see how a new particle would change that, really.

Of course I don't know all that much about medicine or subatomic physics so I could be very wrong. :)

Are there any other applications of this data in everyday life?

I imagine we'll find out when we have that data!

aimeeandbeatles
Sep 10, 2008, 02:08 PM
Maybe it will create a time travel portal!

viz
Sep 10, 2008, 04:21 PM
I don't really see how a subatomic particle could be useful in medicine. Medical science doesn't really get subatomic now, I don't see how a new particle would change that, really.

Of course I don't know all that much about medicine or subatomic physics so I could be very wrong. :)

I imagine we'll find out when we have that data!

Past physics discoveries have had a huge impact in both diagnostics and treatment. Xray machines, lasers, CT and MRI scanners to name a few all rely on our understanding of physics and sub atomic particles in particular. Not to mention the world changing effect of the electron and the use of solid state transistors and massive processing increases. We can hope to find leaps of a similar magnitude over the coming decades as a direct result of the data from the LHC.

Also, how can we forget the world wide web itself? Created - again - as a direct result of particle physics and the massive interconnected data processing and distribution network that was thus needed. :eek:

mr_lewington
Sep 10, 2008, 08:05 PM
How much did this cost? The LHC i mean.

vbraun
Sep 10, 2008, 11:06 PM
I don't really see how a subatomic particle could be useful in medicine. Medical science doesn't really get subatomic now, I don't see how a new particle would change that, really.

One of the great things about science is that you can never possibly conceive all the possible applications a line of research has. For example, antimatter actually does have applications in the medical field in the form of a Positron emission tomography (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Positron_emission_tomography).

As for the actual data: the ATLAS experiment part of the LHC is expected to give 3,200 gigabytes of data a year. It was the University of Arizona's (Bear Down!) responsibility to design the software to interpret that data. The ATLAS is one of six experiments on the LHC.

uppi
Sep 11, 2008, 05:49 AM
As for the actual data: the ATLAS experiment part of the LHC is expected to give 3,200 gigabytes of data a year. It was the University of Arizona's (Bear Down!) responsibility to design the software to interpret that data. The ATLAS is one of six experiments on the LHC.

You're off by a few zeros. If I remeber correctly, the data that has to be stored is about 10 PB (10000000 Gigabytes) per year. And that's after filtering the data. Most data is actually immediately thrown away by software and only a fraction of it is stored.

mdwh
Sep 11, 2008, 04:08 PM
How much did this cost? The LHC i mean.Wikipedia says 3.2–6.4 billion euros (4.4-8.9 billion USD). That's spread over about the last 13 years.

Now, how much is that in days-of-war-in-Iraq? ;)

(For another comparison, that's less than the estimated cost of the 2012 London Olympics. Also, the UK's yearly contribution is 34 million - less than the cost of the Royal Family, and we pay CERN 70 million a year anyway.)

See http://www.lhc.ac.uk/about-the-lhc/faqs.html for some more info.

Serutan
Sep 11, 2008, 07:30 PM
You're off by a few zeros. If I remeber correctly, the data that has to be stored is about 10 PB (10000000 Gigabytes) per year. And that's after filtering the data. Most data is actually immediately thrown away by software and only a fraction of it is stored.

He was talking about only 1 of the detectors on the LHC. The combined
total of all the detectors is probably what you're thinking of.

Cutlass
Sep 12, 2008, 07:17 AM
http://www.lhc-live.com/

uppi
Sep 12, 2008, 07:35 AM
He was talking about only 1 of the detectors on the LHC. The combined
total of all the detectors is probably what you're thinking of.

No, I was just talking about ATLAS. The data from CMS is probably on the same order of magnitude and the others probably produce less data.

I think COMPASS already produces 1 PB of data per year, and that one is small compared to ATLAS and CMS.

vbraun
Sep 12, 2008, 10:30 AM
No, I was just talking about ATLAS. The data from CMS is probably on the same order of magnitude and the others probably produce less data.

I think COMPASS already produces 1 PB of data per year, and that one is small compared to ATLAS and CMS.

Well, the people that designed the software for it (the University of Arizona) said in a public lecture, which I attended, two nights ago that it will generate about 3,200 Gb per year. I hope they're right.

Riffraff
Sep 12, 2008, 10:43 AM
Well, the people that designed the software for it (the University of Arizona) said in a public lecture, which I attended, two nights ago that it will generate about 3,200 Gb per year. I hope they're right.

Presumably they were talking about the detector within the big detector for which they are responsible.

vbraun
Sep 12, 2008, 12:47 PM
I apologize, there was a typo in his power point. It said 3,200 Gb, but we was talking about 3,200 Tb. This is according to the ATLAS fact sheet #4 provided on the website. This number (3,200 Tb) is the estimated raw data per year. The actual physics data is only estimated to be 200 Tb per year.

The University of Arizona had a major role in the entire ATLAS experiment. First, they fixed up the original design to what it currently exists as. They built the forward calorimeters, and they did the software for the entire shabam.

On a side note, I'm surprised to see such resistance to information. Now I wouldn't surprised if people are still skeptical of these numbers I just posted. And when you get down to it, the numbers don't actually matter. Get over what you remember. Your memory is hardly reliable. Listen to others, and don't be so damn cynical. [/rant]

Edit: That last part was towards humanity in general, not any of you.

peter grimes
Sep 12, 2008, 02:05 PM
@ Cutlass: :rotfl:

uppi
Sep 12, 2008, 04:45 PM
On a side note, I'm surprised to see such resistance to information. Now I wouldn't surprised if people are still skeptical of these numbers I just posted. And when you get down to it, the numbers don't actually matter. Get over what you remember. Your memory is hardly reliable. Listen to others, and don't be so damn cynical. [/rant]


If you post numbers, that are off by three orders of magnitudes, then you should expect resisitance. And if there had been no resistance maybe you would never have noticed the typo. My memory of the actual number may indeed be unreliable and if you had posted the 3200 TB number first I would have accepted it. But I trust my memory enough for rembering the order of magnitude I was told at CERN.

And you're right, the actual number doesn't matter much, if its 3.2 PB or 10 PB doesn't make much of a difference. However 3.2 TB and 3.2 PB is a large difference, because the former can be easily solved by buying standard data storage off the shelf and the latter requires pioneering new solutions.

peter grimes
Sep 13, 2008, 07:32 AM
Here's a neat video (http://maniacworld.com/Hadron-Collider-End-of-the-World.html) that explains some of the workings of the LHC.

I had no idea there were 4 accelerations stages - I'm amazed that we naked apes are able to engineer things of such precision.

And I'm always blown away by the fact that in order to study something very small, you need something very large.

Merkinball
Sep 13, 2008, 08:06 PM
http://www.crap.fi/archive/6630.jpg

philippe
Sep 14, 2008, 12:53 AM
http://www.crap.fi/archive/6630.jpg

:lol: If Freeman is a Frenchman, i'm glad he never talks. :D :lol:

Loppan Torkel
Sep 14, 2008, 04:19 AM
Pretty funny :) ...until a portal to the demonworld opens up that is.

Does anyone know this: If the particles travel at 99.99% of the speed of light in the opposite direction - will they collide at nearly twice the speed of light?

mdwh
Sep 14, 2008, 05:11 AM
Pretty funny :) ...until a portal to the demonworld opens up that is.

Does anyone know this: If the particles travel at 99.99% of the speed of light in the opposite direction - will they collide at nearly twice the speed of light?No - the speed of one particle relative to the other will still be less than the speed of light.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velocity-addition_formula#Special_Theory_of_Relativity for the formula.

Basically this is due to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Length_contraction and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_dilation - space and time change so that everything is still consistent.

El_Machinae
Sep 14, 2008, 05:19 AM
The particles won't think so.
It'll look that way to us, though.

mdwh
Sep 14, 2008, 05:44 AM
The particles won't think so.
It'll look that way to us, though.What do you mean, they won't think so?

It won't look like it to us, because we're at rest (relative to the LHC), so we'll see two particles going at 99.99% of the speed of light.

Lord Olleus
Sep 14, 2008, 08:38 AM
you can't simply just add two speeds to get the speed of one relative to the other. We "see" two particles moving at 99.99% the speed of light in opposite directions. However, each particle "sees" itself at rest and "sees" the other particle comming towards it at 99.9999% the speed of light.

Acording to relativity, each of these points of view is equaly valid.

Loppan Torkel
Sep 14, 2008, 09:49 AM
Thanks. I thought it might be something like that, but it does seem a bit strange... seeing the particles going toward each other at close to lightspeed and still just collide with a combined speed that's still just close to the speed of light... :crazyeye: The particles will gain a bit of mass at least with the head-on collision.

It'll be interesting to follow this experiment.

viz
Sep 15, 2008, 09:10 AM
In this instance you need to consult Lorentz transformations and all will be clear:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lorentz_transformation

:)

Loppan Torkel
Sep 20, 2008, 07:58 AM
It seems the experiments are postponed for two months because of some leakage.. according to Swedish news.

ArneHD
Sep 20, 2008, 10:48 AM
It seems the experiments are postponed for two months because of some leakage.. according to Swedish news.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7626944.stm

Magnet failure.

dutchfire
Sep 21, 2008, 10:37 AM
That was to be expected, Rome wasn't built in a single day either.

aimeeandbeatles
Sep 22, 2008, 01:47 PM
So we have a few months more to live!

j/k. For a few days I was really really worried. Now I'm "well, if we all get sucked up, who will give a [beep]?"

Loppan Torkel
Sep 23, 2008, 10:57 AM
So we have a few months more to live!Until Mars/April at least it seems. :(

Onionsoilder
Sep 26, 2008, 05:57 PM
Until Mars/April at least it seems. :(

Mars? :lol: