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One of the Coolest Places In the Universe

timothy posted more than 6 years ago | from the you'll-need-thicker-gloves dept.

Space 338

phantomflanflinger writes "The Cern Laboratory, home of the Large Hadron Collider, is fast becoming one of the coolest places in the Universe. According to news.bbc.co.uk, the Large Hadron Collider is entering the final stages of being lowered to a temperature of 1.9 Kelvin (-271C; -456F) — colder than deep space. The LHC aims to re-create the conditions just after the Big Bang and continue the search for the Higgs boson."

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Higgs Bussom? (5, Funny)

Exanon (1277926) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269891)

We built the LHC to look for tits?

Re:Higgs Bussom? (5, Funny)

katterjohn (726348) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269931)

I can't think of a better reason for it.

Re:Higgs Bussom? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270037)

I can. I want to get inside the LHC and bend over so they can fire particles into my arse.

Re:Higgs Bussom? (0, Troll)

Cheezymadman (1083175) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270129)

Moar liek Large Hardon Collider

Re:Higgs Bussom? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270231)

lol
The google search
site:.edu "large hardon collider"
lists a stanford, harvard and yale page among others

Re:Higgs Bussom? (1, Offtopic)

phagstrom (451510) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270055)

Is it cold in here or are you just glad to see me?

Re:Higgs Bussom? (1)

iamacat (583406) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270605)

I guess you haven't heard about cold and shrinkage then.

Re:Higgs Bussom? (5, Funny)

Max Littlemore (1001285) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270109)

Hey, the title does say it's one of the coolest places in the universe.

Re:Higgs Bussom? (2, Funny)

s74ng3r (963541) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270571)

If you prefer tits for your hardon collider, be my guest.

Why "we"? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270233)

Did you actually help building it?

Re:Higgs Bussom? (5, Funny)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270357)

We built the LHC to look for tits?

What do you think a large hardon collider is for?

Re:Higgs Bussom? (5, Funny)

Duncan Blackthorne (1095849) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270403)

The ever-elusive Higgs Bosom can't be directly observed (because it's like staring into the sun) therefore it must be indirectly observed -- in this case, by lowering the ambient temperature in the observational environment and watching for the most common secondary sign of it's presence, a phenomenon which researchers have fondly nicknamed the "sweater-puppy effect".

Could have used a cold spoon (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270439)

Finds nipples pretty damn quick and only needs a glass, a spoon and some ice.

Can someone code up a clock? (1)

mrmeval (662166) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269895)

A countdown clock to when they fire that thing up? One that works in both Linux and Windows?

Or explain how another program can be used for that.

Re:Can someone code up a clock? (3, Informative)

Ricken (797341) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269947)

Already done www.lhcountdown.com

Re:Can someone code up a clock? (5, Informative)

EXTER (1223922) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269957)

LHC Countdown [lhcountdown.com]

Re:Can someone code up a clock? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270199)

Assuming that the LHC will destroy the Earth, this countdown is also the number of days left to lose your virginity.

Re:Can someone code up a clock? (1)

Erikderzweite (1146485) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270323)

Do you know of any Screenlets/Superkaramba applets for this? I could code it myself, of course, but I would like to have an "official" one on my desktop :)

Re:Can someone code up a clock? (1)

Filip22012005 (852281) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270463)

There's a countdown plasmoid. And iGoogle has a countdown applet.

Re:Can someone code up a clock? (3, Funny)

Provocateur (133110) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269977)

And don't forget to include the theme from "2001: A Space Odyssey" Also Sprach Zarathustra

Also appropriate, Is Zarathustra in your pocket or are you just happy to see the LHC going online?

Also appropriate since we might see the birth of another solar system where the LHC used to be.

nevar fogret! (0, Offtopic)

Anal Surprise (178723) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269897)

You'd expect the Large Hardon Collider [largehardoncollider.com] to be near body temperature, yes?

Coolest place looking for the hottest bang? (5, Interesting)

Mal-2 (675116) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269905)

I find it ironic or at least counter-intuitive that it's necessary to create one of the coldest spaces to look for particles that flourished when things were at their hottest. It makes sense once explained, but I doubt Joe Sixpack would stick around long enough to hear it, let alone grasp it. They just think this thing is going to make a black hole that eats the planet.

Mal-2

Re:Coolest place looking for the hottest bang? (2, Insightful)

kaos07 (1113443) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270101)

I doubt Joe Sixpack knows of the existence of the LHC, or the measurement of kelvin, let alone the actual *temperature* of the LHC measured in kelvin.

Re:Coolest place looking for the hottest bang? (0, Flamebait)

bhima (46039) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270225)

Oh he sure does... it part the whole anti-science shtick that so popular in the US these days. One of my little sisterâ(TM)s friends told her in serious horror that âoethe scientistsâ were going to destroy the earth with this device.

Re:Coolest place looking for the hottest bang? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270309)

One of my little sisterâ(TM)s friends told her in serious horror that âoethe scientistsâ were going to destroy the earth with this device.

Talk about dumb! Doesn't she realize it's not just the Earth, but the entire Universe that is on the line here?!!!

Re:Coolest place looking for the hottest bang? (1)

xalorous (883991) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270539)

Have we gone below 42 Kelvin yet?

Re:Coolest place looking for the hottest bang? (1)

servognome (738846) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270223)

It makes sense once explained, but I doubt Joe Sixpack would stick around long enough to hear it, let alone grasp it.

Not just Joe Sixpack, but anybody who doesn't care much about the experiment at this point. It's like listening to Joe Sixpack's plans for a rock climbing trip... tell me all the details after something interesting has happened.

Dark Knight sequel? (4, Funny)

SpeedyDX (1014595) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269907)

Trying to discover a hypothetical elementary particle, or trying to create Batman's next villain [youtube.com] ?!

They're still searching? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24269915)

Have they checked behind the couch?

Warning! (5, Funny)

Slur (61510) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269917)

Tongue contact with cold collider parts can result in serious injury.

Re:Warning! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270127)

Do not lick collider with remaining tongue.

Re:Warning! (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270477)

Tongue contact with cold collider parts can result in serious injury.

But I want to be the first to taste Higgs Boson. (Rumor has it tastes like chicken.)
   

Re:Warning! (1)

iamacat (583406) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270633)

Don't eat the Large Hadron Collider.

Re:Warning! (1)

Engine (86689) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270695)

Everything tastes like chicken in a first order approximation.

Curious... (2, Interesting)

The Master Control P (655590) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269929)

If the magnets are superconducting, why would they need a good thermal conductor? It's not as if superconductors generate any heat in operation.

And are they really going to push the magnetic fields up to the point where they truly need to cool high-temp superconductors down to the edge of absolute zero? TFA says they're using enormous currents, but doesn't this leave an awful small margin?

Re:Curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24269971)

IIRC, don't all the current superconductors only work when they're cold enough? Previous /. articles lead me to believe room temp. superconductors are still in the lab test stage.

Re:Curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24269997)

The superconducting magnets aren't the only conducting bits.

Also, consider that the collisions are going to generate large quantities of heat. The superconductors need to be kept below their critical point and the liquid argon used in most of the electromagnetic calorimeters needs to be kept cool enough to remain liquid.

Cooling it down as low as possible now is a good idea, since things will start heating up when the collisions begin (especially at higher luminosity). Perhaps 2K is a little excessive, but we have all of this liquid helium sitting around... may as well use it.

Re:Curious... (2, Informative)

seeker_1us (1203072) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270019)

If the magnets are superconducting, why would they need a good thermal conductor? It's not as if superconductors generate any heat in operation.

That's an excellent question. I'm guessing they are not using HTC superconductors, which can be cooled with liquid nitrogen, due to the potential for current-induced superconductivity breakdown.

Here's a little background on the effect (Thank you Wikipedia...)

This equation, which is known as the London equation, predicts that the magnetic field in a superconductor decays exponentially from whatever value it possesses at the surface. The Meissner effect breaks down when the applied magnetic field is too large. Superconductors can be divided into two classes according to how this breakdown occurs. In Type I superconductors, superconductivity is abruptly destroyed when the strength of the applied field rises above a critical value Hc. Depending on the geometry of the sample, one may obtain an intermediate state consisting of regions of normal material carrying a magnetic field mixed with regions of superconducting material containing no field. In Type II superconductors, raising the applied field past a critical value Hc1 leads to a mixed state in which an increasing amount of magnetic flux penetrates the material, but there remains no resistance to the flow of electrical current as long as the current is not too large. At a second critical field strength Hc2, superconductivity is destroyed. The mixed state is actually caused by vortices in the electronic superfluid, sometimes called fluxons because the flux carried by these vortices is quantized. Most pure elemental superconductors, except niobium, technetium, vanadium and carbon nanotubes, are Type I, while almost all impure and compound superconductors are Type II.

Re:Curious... (5, Informative)

amazeofdeath (1102843) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270429)

HTC technology is not available yet for applications like this. They are using conventional Sn3Ti (and NbTi to some extent) superconductors. I'm not sure how the Wikipedia quote is relevant here. Although the wires in LHC are made of LTS materials, the materials still are type II superconductors. The main reason to have large cooling capacity is a phenomenon called "quenching". The wires in the coils are actually made of really thin filaments of superconducting material inside a copper matrix. These filaments can (and do) go out of superconducting state because of a local problem, and at this small point there's naturally high ohmic heating. If the system can't respond quickly enough to lower the local temperature so that the superconducting state is restored, this point of normal state will start to spread at a high speed, causing more heating and boiling off the coolant quite expensively. So this is the reason why you need large cooling capacity and thermal conductivity.

Re:Curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270027)

Superconductors do generate "some" heat, just not very much in comparison. But realize that one of the reasons we can't actually create absolute zero is that in testing the temperature of the space that we created it in, we would actually raise the temperature.

Re:Curious... (4, Informative)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270145)

No. Superconductors generate exactly ZERO ohmic heating when current passes through them.

Not "some", but absolutely ZERO heating.

Re:Curious... (0)

xalorous (883991) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270589)

That would be a PERFECT superconductor. Oh, guess what? 1.9 Kelvin isn't going to get you a perfect superconductor. Probably the closest we have seen, but not perfect.

Re:Curious... (4, Informative)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270609)

Nope. ANY superconductor has zero resistance. That's actually a part of definition for a superconductor.

Even high-temperature ones (with some caveats near critical temperature and in strong magnetic fields) have zero resistance.

Re:Curious... (1)

Matt Edd (884107) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270707)

In a type II superconductor when in its mixed phase state it has lines of superconducting and lines of normal areas called flux. In a field there is a force on the flux lines and they tend to move creating heat. All this happens even though it has zero resistance.

!news (1, Informative)

LaskoVortex (1153471) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269939)

Sorry. The last I checked, the record [physicsworld.com] went to the Bose-Einstein condensate at a few nano-Kelvin. 1.9 K is boiling by comparison.

Re:!news (0, Flamebait)

Artuir (1226648) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269999)

Okay, and what's the point of saying that other than being snarky and trying to look intelligent? Neither the summary nor article state anywhere it was a record, nor did any posts before you made yours, so what the fuck?

Re:!news (3, Funny)

LaskoVortex (1153471) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270023)

so what the fuck?

Sensory overload. I think I melded that story and the previous with the packaging world record...oh wait, there's something happening on my other monitor, can't talk.

Re:!news (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270493)

See how his shit still gets modded up even after you point out how completely inappropriate his comments were? This kind of thing happens a lot - for certain people. And they say there's no mod bias or mod gaming on slashdot...

Bullshit.

When I was growing up (3, Funny)

MillionthMonkey (240664) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270245)

When I was growing up, we had to get by on a few millikelvins, and we were grateful for every last one of them!

Re:When I was growing up (4, Funny)

EEDAm (808004) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270325)

Luxury. Well when I were a lad, our dad used to make 160 of us live in a shoebox in the middle of deep space. Millikelvins?? We *dreamed* of millikelvins....

Re:When I was growing up (5, Funny)

nacturation (646836) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270625)

Luxury. Well when I were a lad, our dad used to make 160 of us live in a shoebox in the middle of deep space. Millikelvins?? We *dreamed* of millikelvins....

Paradise. Why, when I was growin' up, we were all huddled together inside a higgs boson in the middle of a black hole. Every morning, we'd lick the black hole clean with our tongues, then huddle around the event horizon rubbing our hands together until it went *above* absolute zero.
 

Re:!news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270561)

The keywords are "one of the coolest places".

It's not the most coldest, it's one of them.

And it's not a handful of atoms being supercooled for a little while to see how far they can go, it's an extremely large facility with a super complex device, being constantly maintained at that temperature.

Re:!news (4, Insightful)

Gromius (677157) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270611)

and was that Bose-Einstein condenstate 27km long? This is news because its a huge massive object cooled down to 1.9K.

Re:!news (2, Interesting)

naich (781425) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270615)

We can get 0.05 K easily here with one of our dilution fridges or our ADR. 1.9K is nothing to boast about but I guess it's the sheer size of what they are cooling which makes it impressive.

Ah now I see... (4, Funny)

seeker_1us (1203072) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269949)

When they create a black hole and destroy the earth, they can say "but it was such a cool experiment..."

Re:Ah now I see... (4, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269981)

When they create a black hole and destroy the earth, they can say "but it was such a cool experiment..."

Actually, they can't.

Unless they synchronize the destruction with a space tourism trip.

...

Everybody! Start checking for suspicious space flights!

Re:Ah now I see... (4, Funny)

seeker_1us (1203072) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270035)

Actually, they can't.

Unless they synchronize the destruction with a space tourism trip.

...

Everybody! Start checking for suspicious space flights!

I heard every single one of the bastards has a towel and an electronic thumb all prepared.

Re:Ah now I see... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270313)

But if they don't have the Hitchhiker's Guide and a babelfish, they won't get far.

Re:Ah now I see... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270601)

so long and thanks for all the fish

Re:Ah now I see... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270235)

When they create a black hole and destroy the earth, they can say "but it was such a cool experiment..."

The point is if they did create a Black Hole it would be a micro hole and probably smaller than a hydrogen atom. Even if it was much larger remember the old image of trying to shove an elephant through a key hole? Imagine trying to shove a planet through a spot smaller than an atom. The point isn't the world will end that day but that they think creating a micro hole is unlikely but possible. It just puts into perspective that there needs to be a risk benefit standard. Now if they said there was a one in a million chance of making a black hole the size of a basketball then I'd be saying it wasn't worth the risk. Even at one in a billion odds risking the destruction of the planet in the name of science should never be an option. A one in several million chance of creating something that wouldn't harm you if it passed through your body isn't much risk especially when everyone that thinks there's that chance says that there is zero chance of it lasting more than a few milliseconds. Neutrinos do more damage everyday than the micro hole would.

Re:Ah now I see... (3, Funny)

MillionthMonkey (240664) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270257)

Well it would effectively put an end to the vast majority of our problems, replacing them with a single massive problem.

Re:Ah now I see... (1)

maglor_83 (856254) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270433)

replacing them with a single massive problem.

I dunno... wouldn't an Earth-mass black hole be very small?

Re:Ah now I see... (3, Informative)

MillionthMonkey (240664) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270501)

Its Schwarzchild radius would be a few cm. Although it would exert a force of 1 g if you were one Earth radius away (6000 km) but if we manage to make an Earth-weight black hole it will be a triumph of miniaturization. We will have succeeded in finally making a black hole small enough to fit in your pocket.

Re:Ah now I see... (1)

maglor_83 (856254) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270575)

Cue 'Is that a black hole in you pocket...' jokes.

Bring it on (5, Funny)

charlesbakerharris (623282) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269951)

The LHC has nothing on my mom's basement. RIGHT HERE is where it's at, baby. Cool Central.

Omg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24269989)

Gordon [oko.kg] Freeman [man.kg] is our saver :D

In other news... (0)

T3Tech (1306739) | more than 6 years ago | (#24269995)

An originally unintended consequence of the cooling required of the LHC is that it will, as now being predicted by experts, reverse global warming and by 2010 will start a global cooling trend. That is if the earth isn't sucked into a black hole by then.

I thought.... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270009)

that this thing was being built in Texas?

Why are we building it in France? If this is state-of-the-art physics, shouldn't we be keeping it in the US?

Perhaps, like Hollywood, it's cheaper over there, but I think that US dollars should be spent on US based projects....

Re:I thought.... (4, Informative)

Vectronic (1221470) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270099)

Because its not being built by Americans. It's being built by European Organization for Nuclear Research, A.K.A. 'CERN [wikipedia.org] ' (Conseil Europeen pour la Recherche Nucleaire). Thats why its not in the USA, and why its in France.

Re:I thought.... (1, Informative)

Blice (1208832) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270159)

France?? It's in Switzerland. From Wikipedia:

The LHC is being built by the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), and lies under the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva, Switzerland.

Re:I thought.... (2, Funny)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270593)

Your own quote clearly says it's in both.

Re:I thought.... (1)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270279)

Because, you arrogant little fart, *you* (referring both to your country as a whole and to you personally) are not building it.

We are doom, this being a type 13 planet (3, Interesting)

seb42 (920797) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270065)

In the scifi show Lexx, Earth is a type 13 planet which will shrink to the size of a pea due to physicists attempting to determine the precise mass of the Higgs boson particle. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Higgs_boson_in_fiction [wikipedia.org]

Infinitely Improbable (5, Funny)

SlowMovingTarget (550823) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270083)

The collider is so cool you could keep a side of meat in it for a month. It is so incredibly hip it has trouble seeing over its own pelvis. Hey, you sass that hoopy large hadron collider, there's a frood that really knows where its towel's at.

Hot? Cold? (-1, Troll)

Red Jesus (962106) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270091)

[T]he Large Hadron Collider is... being lowered to a temperature of 1.9 Kelvin ... -- colder than deep space.

The LHC aims to re-create the conditions just after the Big Bang...

Focus your eyes between those two excerpts and cross them slightly. A big "WTF?!" seems to appear six to eight inches in front of the screen. But it's just an illusion. The latest physical theories suggest that the universe was absolute zero at the instant of the big bang, heated to 1.9K during the inflationary epoch, and is now at about 2.7K. We aren't sure how to extrapolate this into the future. One theory predicts that the temperature will keep increasing until the universe experiences a "heat death." Another is that it will stabilize at 491K and God will put in His baked potato. Gravity Probe C is testing for other evidence of The Divine so we could know the definitive answer as early as 2017.

ah the BBC again... (1, Informative)

localoptimum (993261) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270131)

1.9 Kelvin isn't that cold, and if the BBC are so excited about the temperature then they should check out pretty much any magnetism lab on the planet and they'll probably find colder spots than this! They were excited last week about energy from nothing [bbc.co.uk] (8 & 9th paragraphs).

silly question concerning microwave background (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270133)

So whatever the cooling mechanism is removes heat from the volume faster than the microwave background heats it up?

Higgs Boson? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270157)

I would have assumed that something this cool would be used to search for the elusive Fonz Particle.

Another example of useless science journalism (0)

shma (863063) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270167)

A friend of mine in high energy theory showed me this article earlier today. As anyone who has any knowledge of MRI knows, almost all strong magnets in use today use superconducting liquid helium to get large field strengths. There is absolutely nothing special about 1.9 Kelvin temperatures. These are easily achievable anywhere.

Hell, compare this with the temperatures needed to make BECs [wikipedia.org] . That's seven orders of magnitude lower than what we're talking about here. Or look at the record lowest temperatures. I believe they are down to 100 picokelvins now.

Honestly, it's embarrassing to see such ridiculous articles put on the front page of the BBC science section. And this is the BBC, one of the most respected names in world news. Next time, save these 'journalists' the trip to Switzerland and send them to the nearest London hospital. They can go see the magnet used for MRIs and marvel at how it's been "cooled to a temperature as cold as deep space"

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (5, Informative)

piters (604305) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270269)

Indeed, getting 1.9K in a lab, or in a single NMR magnet is not a big deal. Try to do it with 1232 huge magnets, spread around 26.6 km, being some 100m underground, and using 7600 km of super-conducting "cable" (270 000 km of superconducting "strand"). This is roughly 4700 tons of material to keep at 1.9K, and 120 tons of helium being recirculated all the time through these stuff to assure 150 kW of HEAT power is dissipated. Noone ever has done a similar cryogenic installation at such scale before!

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (3, Interesting)

rasputin465 (1032646) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270469)

I agree, it's the scale of the cooldown that's impressive. In fact, when the LHC is running at full power, it will be drawing more power than the entire city of Geneva, and most of that power will go towards cooling.

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (4, Insightful)

shma (863063) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270613)

I agree, the scale is something impressive. And certainly the scaling issues could make for an interesting and informative article. Or maybe not. Maybe it's one of the easiest of the many challenges they faced when building this thing (This is the cue for any slashdotters working on the project to chime in and educate us). The article certainly has little to say about the engineering challenges. But look at the headline and lede of the article:

Cern lab goes 'colder than space'
By Paul Rincon
Science reporter, BBC News

A vast physics experiment built in a tunnel below the French-Swiss border is fast becoming one of the coolest places in the Universe.

Now tell me, what do you think a reader without any scientific knowledge will take away from this article, that the scale of the cooling is what makes it challenging, or the temperature itself? That 1.9 K is an exotically low temperature for physics experiments, or that it's mundane? This is what bothers me about most science journalism. The misleading statements and lack of information.

Come to think of it, that's the problem with most non-science journalism too.

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (1)

Fallen Andy (795676) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270277)

I respectfully have to disagree with you. Given the *scale* of the engineering at the LHC. Lord knows what safety procedures you need (quench anyone?). It's not the temperature that's the thing, it's maintaining the whole darned thing at that temperature... Engineering is *always* in the details, and oh my god the LHC has most of those maxed out to an extent that makes my brain hurt. You can only get blase about this if you think E.E.Doc Smith's space operas are dull..

Andy

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (1)

deathcow (455995) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270281)

> Honestly, it's embarrassing to see such
> ridiculous articles

IIRC... the LHC is almost 17 miles around.. how big is a BEC experiment? How big is an MRI machine?

I'm still impressed with the low temps achieved.

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (1)

rm999 (775449) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270297)

From Wikipedia: "it is possible that some molecules reach a state of no kinetic energy while others have more kinetic energy than the measured energy. Since the average between the lower and higher measurements give us the temperature we read, it is quite possible for some molecules to reach zero Kelvin."

Yes, it is possible for things to be colder, like in the above extreme example of molecules with no kinetic energy. I think the novel part of the Large Hadron Collider is its scale. Bringing something this large (a circular tunnel with a circumference of 17 miles) to such a low temperature is the impressive part.

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (1)

G-forze (1169271) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270303)

I don't think it has anything to do with a record low temperature (as someone already pointed out) but rather with the massive scale of the thing. Cooling something down to 1,7 K is done regularly all over the world, but when that something is in the size range of 27 km that makes it somewhat special.

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (2, Informative)

l0b0 (803611) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270445)

Weeell, it is the biggest cryogenic installation ever, the most complex machine ever built, the largest and most powerful particle accelerator ever, and they're pushing lots of data handling limits, such as network transfer speed, storage space and CPU cycles used. Now, what did I forget?

Re:Another example of useless science journalism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270653)

I take it you missed the thread from the other pompous asshole about 40 minutes before yours who also said this wasn't a record. Dipshit, if you don't understand the point of the article then just shut the fuck up already. It's news about the LHC and how it's really cold. Nobody's claiming it's any kind of record you cuntwaffle.

obligatory bash.org quote (5, Funny)

naz404 (1282810) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270317)

[Guo_Si] Hey, you know what sucks?
[TheXPhial] vaccuums
[Guo_Si] Hey, you know what sucks in a metaphorical sense?
[TheXPhial] black holes
[Guo_Si] Hey, you know what just isn't cool?
[TheXPhial] lava?

uneconomic (4, Funny)

zmollusc (763634) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270425)

Have you seen the cost of this large hagrid colliding thing? What is the point of wasting all that tax money looking for that higgs boson that, when found, will probably have been stepped on or at least be all dirty. Wouldn't it make more sense just to write the boson off at the next inventory count and just requisition a NEW higgs boson from stores?
Okay, we need to be more environmentally aware now, and less wasteful of materials but this just confirms what people have told me about these CERN guys; they just take stuff to extremes.

maybe (1)

Holi (250190) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270431)

it doesn't exist.

Light and mass question for experts (1)

zymano (581466) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270441)

Why does light stop accelerating at 186,000 miles per second?

Does that everything in the universe has some mass?

Re:Light and mass question for experts (2, Informative)

Holi (250190) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270513)

light does not stop accelerating at 186,000 mps, it travels at 186,000 mps (well... approximately) in a vacuum. it does not accelerate, it travels at a constant speed (as far as we know), so c is a constant. Now it does slow down as it travels through a medium (water, air, crystal), but mostly that is caused by the absorption and re-emmitance (is that a word?) of the photons.

CERN spin off technologies (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270459)

With all this talk about the LHC starting up soon lets not forget about the "spin out" technologies that they have developed along the way. eg.

1) www [web.cern.ch] - One of the most important developments in computing.

2) Medipix [www.cern.ch] - The only full spectroscopic x-ray detector designed for medical imaging.

What has NASA done? Teflon for non-stick frying pans?

WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24270565)

First thing I read was "Hardon Collider"

Re:WTF? (1)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270647)

First thing I read was "Hardon Collider"

Muahaha! I can't believe no one made that joke before!

Oh wait..

Just read the headline... (1)

slashflood (697891) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270661)

... and expected an article about a beach club in Barcelona.

BlackMesa disaster factory (1)

eth0-event (1278692) | more than 6 years ago | (#24270671)

This whole buildup of never before reached circumstances, environments and ultimately the experiment with unknown effects keeps reminding me of the buildup in the storyline of the original halflife. Better put on my hev suit, anyone seen my crowbar? Remember kids, headcrab == bad, vortigaunt == good
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