Should we build a bigger particle collider? – Sixty Symbols


As the LHC has been Working and running people are beginning to ask the question: What comes next in the world of high-energy physics? Should there be another Collider? And it’s kind of become an issue for some people because, The Large Hadron Collider, although it’s doing fantastic science, It’s measuring quantities to amazingly high precision, if you think of it in terms of the discovery of new particles, It’s discovered one, which was the Higgs back in 2012. BRADY: Which is what it was built for! PROF: Exactly. PETER HIGGS: Really an incredible thing that it happened in my lifetime. PROF: But it’s not found anything else. It’s not found any evidence of dark matter, which throws through the world of supersymmetry. It’s not found any evidence of more exotic things. Perhaps like extra dimensions or other new particles. It has demonstrated that we have effectively an interaction between the Higgs and the fermions, a force acting there that we need to understand better, because we can now probe that regime which we couldn’t before. But the question is, Do we build an even bigger Collider? And it was brought to a forefront by the recent publication suggesting that there might be what they call a future circular Collider based at CERN. That’s where the current Large Hadron Collider is. The Large Hadron Collider is underground in a ring that’s about 25 kilometers long. The Future Circular Collider would be a ring that’s a hundred kilometers long, four times the length. It would cost of order 10 to 20 billion pounds. Naturally a question that we need to ask ourselves, both as physicists but also society, Where do you want to invest these large amounts of money? There was a particular article that, at least within the particle physics community, was read a lot, by Sabine Hossenfelder, in which she said, Although she accepted that probing fundamental physics through a particle accelerator is the best microscope there is to do that, the fact that we’ve only made this one Discovery and we don’t have any great ideas as to what is coming next in terms of theory Perhaps we should be deferring building maybe not even building a future Collider until we have our theories firmly better established and Then we can perhaps go ahead once we’ve said well this is almost certainly to be be the way forward and that and therefore that will dictate the form of any large Collider. BRADY: Rather than kind of fumbling in the dark PROF: I think that’s a probably she would agree without that that the way that we if we Go ahead right now. We are will be basing it on physics that we already know but more speculative physics about what’s coming next And so and it’s a really important question to address for me personally I think it’s it’s a it’s there’s not a clear-cut answer I Remember back in the 1980s when the Large Hadron Collider was being put forward and maybe even slightly earlier People did think they knew what the solution was. They did think that Dark matter would be found in what was known as WIMPs, weakly interacting massive particles. There was we talked about a wimp miracle and There were natural candidates for this WIMPs, which were coming from supersymmetry The Higgs mechanism had been suggested back in the 60s and so there was a there was in some sense a well-defined path to go along and if I were in it But the very first conference I ever went to in 1983 was at the Royal Society and Stephen Hawking gave a talk there in which he said we Will know everything by the end of the century and it’s all “N=8 super-gravity”. He called it It was called and turned out not to be the case there was an example where we did think we knew where we were going and we the decision on the LHC was made and you do need to make these many years in advance, you know the LHC came into operation in 2008 Right, 20 odd years nearly thirty years after the initial proposal the proposal for the future circular Collider would have it starting in 2050 because you’ve got to build these things you’ve got to develop the technology Ed, are you saying that the large hadron collider didn’t end up Discovering the thing it was built to discover? No it did. You’re quite right You said at the very beginning its primary goal was to discover the Higgs, but it had secondary goals and there was a real feeling that it would probably be able to if it found the Higgs it would probably find the these WIMP particles because there was supersymmetric models which suggested that WIMP particles would be in the same sort of mass range as the Higgs. That wasn’t the case And that wasn’t the case they have just not they’re just not showing up. In fact, no new particles of showing up. So the Argument for building the big circular Collider isn’t there as strongly as it was for the LHC? In the sense of having a whole series of particles that you think you’re going to find Yeah, as far as I can tell there’s not, and in fact It would be a case that we’d be building it partly in order to actually use the upgraded LHC and of course the LHC itself still has many years left of its lifetime to go and Be using it Not only as a discovery machine to actually find new things that might might be there but also to as a high precision Machine to help us understand the standard model and in particular the Higgs and the interaction the Higgs has with fermions with the Things that you and I are made of the quarks and the leptons so to help us understand those interactions much much better because another way of finding new physics is to say here’s my standard model prediction for some very exotic process then I go and measure that exotic process and I find a difference and the difference may only be in like the tenth decimal place but if you are Sure about the calculations that have gone into it and sure about the measurements then there’s your probing your finding evidence of new physics This is the detector and that’s one reason why you would go for it You know a much more powerful machine that can probe into these new areas Smaller length scales higher energy where things might pop up. We just don’t know. It’s one of the Frustrating things about this. There’s two things that can go on here You can build a new Collider to find a new particle and have some paradigm change Yeah Or you can build one to just like fine tuning and get a higher resolution and better pictures and then two different arguments It feels like yeah, but in fine-tuning you looking for differences, right? It’s not a case of I mean, yes, that’s what you’re always probing for you with a wave physics works Right as we basically we don’t try to confirm models. We try to rule them out That’s kind of in our heads we try to find deviations and that’s what would this fine-tuning. It would be rather than having, you know Something smash you in the face. And so here I am, this brand new particle. Look at me. I’ve revolutionised things straight away It’s a much more subtle way of doing it. You’re finding deviations from what the standard model would say and and and Nature is can be like this it can it can hide These new ingredients that make it very difficult to find and if we don’t build something, we’re not going to find them this way Ed, I know it takes a lot of time to build these things, but still, wouldn’t it make more sense to wait for the next really paradigm I think Sabine’s got a very valid point here, but you know But but the question also is at what stage? In that process do you say AHA now it’s time to build my new You know future circular collider Because there is kind of two two aspects to it one. Is that the technology involved in the under theorist? What do I know but I believe the technology involved in this is really complicated. Okay, you you they’re always at the cutting edge developing things so what the LHC can do right today the back in the 1980s people no idea they’d be able to do it at the level that they can do it because Technology is developed one of the reasons they’ve been able to do it is that there was always a funding stream to help support the superconducting magnets to help support the development of the Accelerator technology the detector technology if you put that on hold right and said, okay Let’s just let the theories have a go now for a while until we come up with something What are these people going to do? They’re not going to hang around. They’re not going to play say yeah, this is okay Let’s just there is take about five years. Let’s go and do something else They’re going to leave and the subject and the runs the real risk. It is an expensive city It’s like Apollo they will leave and that’s it. It’ll be the end of it And and okay, if you if you prepared to accept that so be it that that’s the nature of it there is one possible route through I And I think Cerner are playing this They’re playing for two possible scenarios here There’s another one, which is that although they’ve come out with this future Collider circular Collider paper And I personally think it’s really exciting they’ve also is sort of at the same time come up with it with another set of papers where they’re looking at actually what it Can we make use of what’s around CERN at the moment to actually probe different types of physics, which would still be looking at underlying fundamental physics of our universe but not Requiring, you know? Really high energy particle collisions? And this is motivated partly by the fact that we’ve not seen any evidence of dark matter we’ve not seen these massive doubt matter particles and maybe What what is actually going on in the universe? these equivalent dark matter particles aren’t very massive, they’re maybe really light and They don’t interact very much with us in which cases having a big heavy Large Hadron light Collider won’t be the way to see them. We need more sophisticated Ready-made precisely-made detectors to pick up some of these lights particles like axions specific axion detectors and so one possibility is to actually look at and for a set of experiments That could be based around CERN using the the accelerators They’ve already gots and using some of the facilities they’ve already got so just bout better experiments under the existing ring They use it. Yes, so they use up I’d bolts is a thinking of it and gently place existing expect, you know, you use what you’ve got and then lots of us Go that was so exciting. And and of course you’re building new things as well, but that’s well. That’s that’s another possible and So why ever said that I could imagine? the community saying Okay Let’s have this period where we go that route for a little while Let’s keep the R&D going for the for the big accelerators But during that period we can be probing testing these these models of weak coupling regimes like dark matter particles screening mechanisms, which could account for you know the fifth force that Could be driving the accelerating universe But meanwhile carry on with its R&D invest in the R&D for the future accelerators And then hopefully some results will come out of these New set of proposals or some theoretical developments will emerge which say yeah. This is the way we should be going and Then you can sort of decide Ok Now we’ll start the process on but there is always this risk back in the 80s people were absolutely certain I think a pretty certain about that not absolutely but fairly certain that WIMPs were the way forward and that supersymmetry was the way forward There was no question to build the Large Hadron Collider after the large electron positron Collider It was it was just the thing to do and it turned out not to be right It’s er it who knows? That’s the Excitement’s of many ways of working in these kind of fields. What would you do, Ed? Because obviously you’re biased yeah, but you do live in a world where you are also like, hospitals and potholes to be built, and your children are going out to the world that need infrastructure How do you think the money should be spent so it’s a lot of money and I would spend it and I because for a number of reasons one is You know, it’s not just the UK contributing to CERN. CERN has got 22 members It’s got I don’t know eight affiliated members, you know, there’s 30 countries here will all contribute They’ll contribute over many many years. Okay, it’s not as if this is an immediate out-lay, so there’s a dispersion of the actual finance. Of course hospitals need all the facilities they can but, you know particle physics live in hospitals right my you know my dear father who passed away when I went to the city hospital for him to have Radiology treatment. On the wall, is this amazing plaque, I’ve tried to find an image of it that talks about the cyclotron accelerator that they were using and The and that’s that was the particle physics of the forties thirties forties fifties that is now in medicine the MRI scanner that was invented here at, here at Nottingham Uses technology from the physics environment where there was purely for research that is now been bedded in in hospitals all around the world medicine needs Funding in its own, right? Of course it does but it’s had so much input from fundamental ideas fundamental physics ideas for a start and chemistry and radioisotopes that everywhere in medicine that to simply Simply say yeah we should be putting all of this into medicine for example is Not the way to make the major breakthroughs that will help people in the future in medicine either What makes us special what makes us special is our inquisitive nature. We want to know about the universe. We want to know about beautiful pictures and admire them we want to know about what makes the universe tick. And we should have the facilities to be able to invest in all of these

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51 thoughts on “Should we build a bigger particle collider? – Sixty Symbols

  1. If you want to BUILD a BIGGER, and MORE POINTLESS ATOM SMASHER… do it on your own DIME… stop duping the PUBLIC to PAY for your SALARIES and pointless meaningless Research… That MONEY is better spent on CANCER RESEARCH.

  2. If Jeff Bezos completely funded this project, he would still be worth around $130 billion

  3. Yes the roof is leaking and it need fixing but let’s use our discretionary money and go on a vacation. 🤣

  4. The best possible particle accelerator would be using a linear accelerator around a black hole. There would be no limit to how much energy you could put into a particle, even with a finite size accelerator, because it would be held to a circle by the gravity of the black hole and no matter how close it got to the speed of light, it would be deflected about the same amount. With that method, you could get to the planck scale….. and then destroy the universe when you set off vacuum decay with the first collision lol.

  5. woaw some code, imagine the physics "oscillater" (graphics engine) on that… Extra Dimmensions how about kirillian photography, pizeo electric's theories, water and osilation of matter through sound as well other materials. platnium has sound propertes, as well as sand and water(as well as emotional properties). shout out to the machine 1968 the first computer i noticed the screening. idk know this could make a astronaught of the ground.. .. .. ive understood ion stimulation to be something or particle.

  6. How would you find "dark matter" unless you are fumbling in the dark? Build an even bigger collider than proposed.

  7. This is natural selection at work from a purely utilitarian point of view. Imagine 1,000,000 similar decisions across a million alien civilizations as to whether they ought ot fund the next gizmo. On the one hand the loss of critical experience might cost in the long run if you don't build it, and on the other it might be wasting precious resources that are greatey needed for more pressing research or social issues. What we decide on this is really important. My intuition is that that high-energy physics has reached a current plateau for the next several generations at least. I think that the bulk of research funding in physics should be focused on the engineering challenges of perfecting net fusion power, which will literally boost our power to explore the more distant reaches of all sorts of fields including this one.

  8. I cannot stop thinking about an orbital particle accellerator. As long as there is no need to maintain high vacuum in the system it could have possibly consisted of a chain of satellites. And theoretically it could have been as large as one can imagine.

  9. Theoretical physics, the place where second rate physicist find work. Their "reality" is so twisted that they need to invent one invisible particle a month.

  10. If an insignificant military power like Australia can spend seven billion Aussie dollars on six Triton drones to patrol the South China sea, and buy 75 Joint Strike Fighters at around one hundred million a piece, surely two billion Euros spread amongt the OECD, or EU or any other international collaboration is not such a significant amount to invest in a new particle accelerator.

  11. So we build the 100km collider and then I can here you spouting the same arguments for the 500km collider.  Maybe we should start rethinking about the physics instead.  You really need a breakthrough in science thinking, not a bigger machine.  The failure of not finding the WIMPS is the reason the answer will be "No more funding".  Process the data that you have and figure out what is going on.

  12. Well, consider how much money we pour into our militaries. I'd rather see it invested into such endeavours than in senseless wars.

  13. No underground DM labs or the great LHC have detected ONE sign of a WHIMP. My hypothesis that Dark Matter is not a WIMP, but maybe is a deformation of space-time by which the curvature of space-time ALONE is the cause of the gravitational effect. Gravity is the consequence of the curvature of space-time. It may be possible that the structure of space-time itself could be warped without the presence of mass. Space-time has been shown to react like a fabric by warping, twisting, and propagating independent of mass. These properties have been proven with observations of gravitational lensing, frame dragging, and now gravitational waves. Fabrics can be stretched, pressured, and/or heated to the point of deformation. Such extreme conditions were all present during inflation, so it is plausible that space-time’s elastic nature could have hit its yield point and permanently deformed. Therefore, if gravity is the consequence of the warping of space-time, and fabrics can be permanently deformed, then a deformation could create a gravitational effect independent of mass. Thus, the unidentified dark "matter" that seems to be so elusive to modern science may not be matter at all but merely warped deformities causing gravitational effects. DM could be a microscopic black hole with no mass at the center…
    Prediction: Spacetime's elastic property hits a yield point, so only that part of geodesic's "stretch marks" would remain after inflation stopped. These steep gravitational wells would not follow the inverse square law.

  14. So as a person who isn't a physics expert, why can't we make the LHC super powered to step this process up? If it costs millions to build a new one why not halt the LHC and make this hugely more powerful, it could be cheaper.

  15. There are different forms of time travel, but as far as I know the one with the most success is where we find a tachyon at CERN, don't know how to go about doing that, and sequester its sister particle from the say, quark gluon anti-quark split, anyway a certain amount of time is allowed to pass ( N seconds) and a measurement is made information traveled back in time. Also, possibly with quantum entanglement, entangle with a large number of electrons attached to an atom, or lets say photon, pulse 1 photon at a time as it strikes an atom if it is entangled quantum mechanically this will break the entanglement producing the desired result, if the geometry is both planar and the light pulses are linear along the planar, just say Y axis, and both the momentum and the position can be known simultaneously. Will the quantum system make the measurement first and give the researcher the answer, ps I think I understand quantum computing on a whole other level now.

  16. To say that the LHC has found one particle and done NOTHING else is complete and utter rubbish – completely untrue.

  17. Great video, thank you for your work. That being said, moving background for text was awful and distracting.

  18. What did we do with the higs, did it bring us new things we can make. Did we earn with money or something. I don’t think so, so don’t built it, its a waste…..

  19. Apparently the LHC did prove time travel is possible. How else can you explain Bill Bixby @ 2:17 be at the LHC?

  20. People dont realize that as our experiments get more and more significant, its going too take much more money and much more time and much more labor for fewer, but much more important discoveries.

  21. "What makes us special? What makes us special is our inquisitive nature. We want to know about the universe. We want to know about beautiful pictures and admire them. We want to know about what makes the universe tick."

  22. Too bad they can't build a collider in space itself. Instead of using Earth alone as a sandbox for experimentation. Or testing particle collisions to trigger Casimir effects in attempt to look for dark energy flows.

  23. Smaller. Like 30 cm long. Particles are tiny you can achieve the same results that a giant machine would. Or build an awesome gun. Why not guide particles on a curved path algorithm and… also, why not try these tests in water submerged. … I have made major breakthrough discoveries … all of which i am by my own will. I choose and let myself forget.

    Peace.

  24. We are on the cusp of major practical discoveries AI, super conductors, quantum computers, carbon nano tubes, the list goes on and on….. and on these things will change the entire world in thousands of ways maybe we should give this 50 billion to those projects so that the next collider we build could benefit from all those amazing (useful) technologies.

  25. The EU member states spent 200 billion euros in Military spending in 2016. What does this say about our priorities and what we think is important?

  26. Would've been better to build a hypervacuum that tears a particle apart into its smaller building blocks.

    Kind of a negative gravitational field around a particle.

    Way smaller, cheaper and way easier to detect and to analyze.

  27. in case of the 100km accelerator ,why dont they make a new 25km circle in continuance to the one there is already there , in a figure of "8".
    and with a small horizontal tilt . they can continue to a third combined with a fourth circle to complete the 100km distance .

  28. Governments waste trillions bailing out failing banks to keep the debt machine working and nonsensical wars. I would rather waste 100 billion building a bigger lhc than trillions in these banks. At least with the lhc we get a chance to discover new things and develop humankind and even a bigger lhc wouldn’t get anything we would at least learn that some theories were wrong and would help us steer in the path. I argue that is better to try and fail and to keep living only in speculation. At least we would learn from the mistakes. Isn’t that how science works?

  29. since you are making a case for tech transfer from physics to health/society, what was one technological innovation that came out of the LHC ? Would be interesting to know. Thanks in advance.

  30. Imagine having a theory so crucial and important that something as absolutely massive as the LHC was built partly just to test your theory! Must've felt absolutely amazing and brutally nerve wracking

  31. UK spends $50 billion on defense. If UK and 29 other countries can't finance a $20 billion project over 30 years – $22 million a year, there's something wrong. A university building costs that much.

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