Geneva atom smasher seeks dark matter discoveries

Mar 08, 2010 By BRADLEY S. KLAPPER , Associated Press Writer
German Rolf-Dieter Heuer, Director General of CERN, informs journalists about restarting of the LHC (Large Hadron Collider) at CERN, during a press conference at the Geneva Press Club in Geneva, in Geneva, Switzerland, Monday, March 8, 2010. The operators of the world's largest atom smasher hope to provide first discoveries about the elusive nature of dark matter later this year. The director of the European Organization for Nuclear Research, or CERN, said the Large Hadron Collider will be ramped up to half-power in March 2010. That will still be three times more energy than the world record CERN set in 2009. (AP Photo/Keystone, Salvatore Di Nolfi)

(AP) -- The world's largest atom smasher could generate its first scientific breakthrough later this year when operators hope to make discoveries into the elusive nature of dark matter, the director of the European Organization for Nuclear Research said Monday.

Rolf-Dieter Heuer said the would be ramped up to world record power later this month. At 7 trillion electron volts, that will be three times more energy than the record set in November by Heuer's organization - known by its French acronym .

By crashing high energy beams of protons into each other in a 27-kilometer (17-mile) tunnel under the Swiss-French border at Geneva, CERN's scientists hope to gain key insights into the makeup of matter and the creation of the universe billions of years ago in the moments after the Big Bang.

There have been no discoveries so far with the LHC, Heuer said. But he predicted breakthroughs soon into the mysterious that scientists believe comprises a quarter of the whole universe.

"We will open a door for new physics at the end of this year," Heuer told reporters. "It took several decades for us to understand the visible universe. This is all nicely explained by the standard model, but the big problem is that this is only 5 percent of the universe."

CERN's experiments represent a massive effort among 7,000 scientists from over 80 countries into better understanding nature and how it works. Like most discoveries in , the true significance of breakthroughs in dark matter, antimatter or dark energy would only become clear after the revelations are made. Heuer likened the situation to the 1932 discovery of the positron, which has since become a key tool in diagnosing and tracking human cancer.

Dark matter is a particularly tricky subject. Theorized by scientists who couldn't understand missing mass and strangely bent light in faraway galaxies, dark matter has become widely accepted in the physics community without its existence ever being concretely proven.

These invisible substances cannot be seen through telescopes or advanced instruments. And they are separate from everything we see in the universe - ourselves, objects on this Earth, the planets, the stars and the galaxies - which account for a small fraction of all matter. But dark matter's effect on gravity is significant.

Scientists believe that dark matter makes galaxies spin faster than expected, and that it can affect the light of visible matter in ways we can't understand.

A separate entity called "dark energy" makes up the remaining 70 percent of the universe, and this is understood as associated with the vacuum that is evenly distributed in space and time. It is believed to accelerate the expansion of the universe.

CERN's collider "could be the ideal machine to shed the first light into the dark universe," Heuer said, saying that experiments would soon be able to disprove some theories about dark matter and possibly find elements that are completely new.

The machine recently restarted after a 2 1/2 month winter shutdown during which scientists made improvements and checked out the smasher's ability to collide protons at higher energy levels.

The collider will run at 7 TeV through next year, before being shut down in 2012 to upgrade to full design energy of 14 TeV. It will then restart in 2013, with a long-term goal of revealing the Higgs boson, or "God particle," so named because scientists believe it gives mass to other matter.

"The Higgs particle is not easy to find," Heuer said. "We know everything about the Higgs particle, except if it exists."

Explore further: Single laser stops molecular tumbling motion instantly

3.7 /5 (23 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Large Hadron Collider sends beams in 2 directions

Nov 23, 2009

(AP) -- The world's largest atom smasher made another leap forward Monday by circulating beams of protons in opposite directions at the same time in the $10 billion machine after more than a year of repairs, ...

World's most powerful atom smasher restarts: CERN

Feb 28, 2010

Scientists have restarted the world's most powerful atom-smasher overnight, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) said Sunday, as they launch a new bid to uncover the secrets of the universe.

Team Shines Cosmic Light on Missing Ordinary Matter

Jan 07, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- An international team of scientists, led by University of Maryland astronomer Stacy McGaugh, has found that individual galactic objects have less ordinary matter, relative to dark matter, than does the Universe ...

Is the Vacuum Empty? -- the Higgs Field and the Dark Energy

May 10, 2007

The problems in understanding the true nature of the “vacuum” of space were discussed by theoretical physicist Alvaro de Rújula from CERN (the European Council for Nuclear Research) in Geneva, Switzerland, and a professor ...

Restored machine to explore mysteries of Big Bang

Nov 21, 2009

(AP) -- Scientists are preparing the world's largest atom smasher to explore the depths of matter after successfully restarting the $10 billion machine following more than a year of repairs.

Michigan integral to world's largest physics experiment

Sep 05, 2008

After 20 years of construction, a machine that could either verify or nullify the prevailing theory of particle physics is about to begin its mission. CERN's epic Large Hadron Collider (LHC) project currently involves 25 ...

Recommended for you

New method for non-invasive prostate cancer screening

4 hours ago

Cancer screening is a critical approach for preventing cancer deaths because cases caught early are often more treatable. But while there are already existing ways to screen for different types of cancer, ...

How bubble studies benefit science and engineering

5 hours ago

The image above shows a perfect bubble imploding in weightlessness. This bubble, and many like it, are produced by the researchers from the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland. What ...

Famous Feynman lectures put online with free access

5 hours ago

(Phys.org) —Back in the early sixties, physicist Richard Feynman gave a series of lectures on physics to first year students at Caltech—those lectures were subsequently put into print and made into text ...

Single laser stops molecular tumbling motion instantly

10 hours ago

In the quantum world, making the simple atom behave is one thing, but making the more complex molecule behave is another story. Now Northwestern University scientists have figured out an elegant way to stop a molecule from ...

User comments : 40

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Crackpot
1 / 5 (1) Mar 08, 2010
Quote: "It took several decades for us to understand the visible universe. This is all nicely explained by the standard model"

Well, that's an exaggeration! And Higgs is just one of the problems...

Seems like the director is fishing for more funding! You have to be quite desperate to almost promise the discovery of "dark matter"...

"Dark matter" may not even exist! "Planar gravitation" could possibly explain the rotational dynamics of galaxies just as well: http://classicala...ace.html
loreak
3 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2010
The problem is that dark matter has already been visually proven via cosmology by direct observation through gravitational lensing. Alternate theories of gravity do not explain these observations, had they not been made alternate theories of gravity would still be very viable.
seneca
1 / 5 (7) Mar 08, 2010
The real problem is rather lack of CERN security analysis in the light of the recent models and computer simulations. Why to search for Higgs boson, if we don't know, where we are about to evaporate and condense again after then?

http://news.scien...-01.html

"Curiously, though, nobody had ever shown that the prevailing theory of gravity, Einstein's theory of general relativity, actually predicts that a black hole can be made this way. Now a computer model shows conclusively for the first time that a particle collision really can make a black hole."

How is it possible for USD 7 billions+ experiment, nobody did such trivial computer simulation, ever? What this guy (Rolf-Dieter Heuer) is talking about, after then?
JayK
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 08, 2010
@seneca: You think that computer simulation was trivial? Do you have a clue? Did you actually read that article that you posted, or are you just trolling?

seneca
1 / 5 (5) Mar 08, 2010
Definitely it's the less trivial, then to built whole LHC. In fact, such simulation could be done before ten years without problem - it's using only well known theories and concepts. Now we are facing thousands of people, who simply don't want to lose their jobs and carriers and they're prepared to do everything against it - like commies in North Korea. We have a situation, Huston.
JayK
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 08, 2010
@seneca: Are you trying to be anti-intellectual with that comment, because I'm having problems seeing it any other way.

Perhaps as well you didn't really understand this paragraph from your linked article:
Now Choptuik and Frans Pretorius of Princeton University have simulated such collisions, including all the extremely complex mathematical details from general relativity. For simplicity and to make the simulations generic, they modeled the two particles as hypothetical objects known as boson stars, which are similar to models that describe stars as spheres of fluid. Using hundreds of computers, Choptuik and Pretorius calculated the gravitational interactions between the colliding particles and found that a black hole does form if the two particles collide with a total energy of about one-third of the Planck energy, slightly lower than the energy predicted by hoop conjecture, as they report in a paper in press at Physical Review Letters.
seneca
1 / 5 (6) Mar 08, 2010
..are you trying to be anti-intellectual with that comment..

Why just me? I don't ignore these results, with compare to CERN physicists...
JayK
4 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2010
That's what I thought. You have nothing useful to add except to cast aspersions at CERN because you have an irrational fear of it. Thanks for the confirmation, should help a lot of people here determine if you are worth the attention.
jamesrm
1 / 5 (2) Mar 08, 2010
Tensor vector calar gravity
http://en.wikiped..._gravity
In addition to its ability to account for the flat rotation curves of galaxies (which is what MOND was originally designed to address), TeVeS is claimed to be consistent with a range of other phenomena, such as gravitational lensing and cosmological observations. However, Seifert[3] shows that with Bekenstein's proposed parameters, a TeVeS star is highly unstable, on the scale of approximately 106 seconds (two weeks). The ability of the theory to simultaneously account for galactic dynamics and lensing is also challenged[4]. A possible resolution may be in the form of massive (around 2eV) neutrinos[5].
seneca
1 / 5 (5) Mar 08, 2010
...because you have an irrational fear of it..
Expectations based on computer simulations or robust math models are those most rational ones.

http://arxiv.org/.../0606193
http://en.wikiped...ack_hole

If we will ignore these rational models, couldn't we call it an irrational ignorance?
jamesrm
5 / 5 (2) Mar 08, 2010
www.atnf.csiro.au...1/paper/

Gravitational lensing is most often used as a tool to investigate the distribution of (dark) matter in the universe, but, if the mass distribution is known a priori, it becomes, at least in principle, a powerful probe of gravity itself. Lensing observations are a more powerful tool than dynamical measurements because they allow measurements of the gravitational field far away from visible matter. For example, modified Newtonian dynamics (MOND) has no relativistic extension, and so makes no firm lensing predictions, but galaxy-galaxy lensing data can be used to empirically constrain the deflection law of a MONDian point-mass. The implied MONDian lensing formalism is consistent with general relativity, in so far as the deflection experienced by a photon is twice that experienced by a massive particle moving at the speed of light. With the deflection law in place and no invisible matter, MOND can be tested wherever lensing is observed.
seneca
1 / 5 (5) Mar 08, 2010
You have nothing useful to add except
LOL, try to propose some objection, which would force you to consider the risk of LHC collisions more seriously. Can such objection exist at all for you?

Or are you prepared to simply refute ANY objection thinkable as "nothing useful" in this context?
JayK
4 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2010
You didn't even read the article you posted, so why should I think you have an educated basis for your objections? Also, based on previous encounters with your "arguments" in other threads and your constant repetitious fear-mongering attitude, I have no reason not to dismiss most everything you post with extreme prejudice.
seneca
1 / 5 (3) Mar 08, 2010
In another words, you're ignoring some article just because you're expecting, some anonymous troll didn't read it, too? This would be a nice example of gregarious tendency...
JayK
4 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2010
What article am I ignoring, seneca? I read through the one that you included, and I'm in the process of acquiring the actual journal article that was mentioned. What I said is that YOU didn't read it, which is obvious by your conclusion that the model was somehow "trivial". Also, you would have mentioned that the model was incomplete, had you actually understood what it said.
seneca
1 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2010
..I read through the one that you included....based on previous encounters with your "arguments" in other thread.
I posted links to at least ten another articles and reviews in these threads...;-) Should I repeat it all again?
..what I said is that YOU didn't read it
What you're saying is completely irrelevant, face it.
JayK
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 08, 2010
Interesting, the APS (American Physical Society) doesn't show Choptuik's article on their website, and seneca's link above doesn't actually have a direct citation to the paper. The article came out on Jan. 22nd, 2010, so you would think the electronic version of Physical Letters Review would have been updated with it by now......

Anyone else possibly have the correct citation for Choptuik and Pretorius's paper?
seneca
1 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2010
have the correct citation for Choptuik and Pretorius's paper
Preprint is here, if you mean this.. http://arxiv.org/abs/0908.1780 Anyway, there are number of other models, leading to the same results

http://www.risk-e...fety.pdf
JayK
4 / 5 (4) Mar 08, 2010
@seneca: apparently you read the title of that article and came to your own conclusion. Should I go back through all those other threads and try to follow your broken links, 1 rated comments and your fear mongering in order to more casually dismiss your entreaties, or should I be lazy and just take what has been discussed here as a glaring example of how you just don't get it? I particularly like your comment comparing everyone in the thread to Hitler. That was pure artwork. http://www.physor...143.html
seneca
1 / 5 (7) Mar 08, 2010
.your broken links, 1 rated comments..
Do you think, the articles I'm linking are 1-rated? Some trolls would vote me negative under all circumstances, this is just their strategy. They've no chance anyway - they're only demonstrating, how mediocre human society is working. And I'm not here to convince just you, can you understand? The blind opinion of yours is completely irrelevant in this point.
..I particularly like your comment comparing everyone in the thread to Hitler..
Nope, I compared the people ignorant to LHC risk to Germans, who voted Hitler. You even "cannot" get my analogies.
JayK
3.7 / 5 (3) Mar 08, 2010
@seneca: You're just a misunderstood genius trying to save the world from the big bad atom smasher. Has anyone suggested that you go hold up a big sign out front every day until they shut it down? I think that would probably be the best usage of your time.
eachus
5 / 5 (6) Mar 08, 2010
Plank energy is about 1.22 × 10^19 GeV The maximum center of mass collision energy of the LHC will be around 14 TeV (14,000 GeV) So according to Joseph Lykken it only takes 2,178,571,428,571,428,571 times the center of mass energy LHC will reach to create a black hole, give or take a bit.

Highly energetic cosmic rays constantly hit our atmosphere. Some of them come close to the Planck energy, but collisions with atoms in the atmosphere will be effectively at the square root of the cosmic ray energy in center of mass co-ordinates.

Could two cosmic rays travelling in opposite directions collide and create a black hole? Possibly, and it might be interesting to calculate the signature of such a quantum black hole evaporating, and to look for such events in areas near supernovas and black holes where the highest energy cosmic rays can be found.

As for the LHC creating black holes? Only in some alternate universe.
Parsec
5 / 5 (2) Mar 09, 2010
Tensor vector calar gravity
http://en.wikiped..._gravity
In addition to its ability to account for the flat rotation curves of galaxies (which is what MOND was originally designed to address), TeVeS is claimed to be consistent with a range of other phenomena, such as gravitational lensing and cosmological observations. However, Seifert[3] shows that with Bekenstein's proposed parameters, a TeVeS star is highly unstable, on the scale of approximately 106 seconds (two weeks). The ability of the theory to simultaneously account for galactic dynamics and lensing is also challenged[4]. A possible resolution may be in the form of massive (around 2eV) neutrinos[5].


2ev neutrinos are pretty unlikely. I believe that the upper limits of current measurements are quite a bit smaller than that.
broglia
1 / 5 (3) Mar 09, 2010
..according to Joseph Lykken it only takes 2,178,571,428,571,428,571 times the center of mass energy LHC will reach to create a black hole...
You see, by Savas Dimopoulos from Stanford University and Greg Landsberg LHC is expected to produce black hole every second.

http://arxiv.org/.../0106295

Because production of black holes is one of the main purposes of LHC from its very beginning, I do expect, these guys are more right then the Joseph Lykken

http://www.unisci...1012.htm

How such giant difference in theoretical prediction is possible? Well, this article explains it clearly:

http://news.scien...2-01.htm

"Instead of being three dimensional, space actually has more dimensions that are curled into little loops too small to be detected except in a high-energy particle collision. Predicted by certain theories, those extra dimensions might effectively lower the Planck energy by a huge factor.."
broglia
1 / 5 (4) Mar 09, 2010
Someone could admit, existence of extradimensions is extremelly improbable. But after then forty decades of string theory development are uselless, too. The detection of extradimensions is one of main programs of LHC research, too.

http://cerncourie...rn/28173

Of course, scientists knows very well, the existence of extradimensions is closely connected to black hole formation in LHC - they're not so stupid, as many posters are pretending here...

http://cerncourie...rn/34938

In another words, the circle is closed. CERN physicists are trying to verify their theories just by the most dangerous way thinkable: by formation of stable black holes in LHC. And they're lying openly, when saying, they don't expect such result at LHC. Of course, they do.

http://adsabs.har......6193B
http://www.iop.or...2/12/S52

Whereas it's fully our responsibility to fight against lies and evil. If we don't, we will be punished.
Shootist
not rated yet Mar 09, 2010
"Geneva atom smasher seeks dark matter"

Fails. Rediscovers Newton.
fourthrocker
5 / 5 (2) Mar 09, 2010
The problem is that dark matter has already been visually proven via cosmology by direct observation through gravitational lensing. Alternate theories of gravity do not explain these observations, had they not been made alternate theories of gravity would still be very viable.


Seeing effects that aren't explained by the standard model and having to invoke ghosts to explain those effects is far from proving that ghosts exist. That is like shining a light at something and explaining the shadow as dark projection that appears on the other side of objects. Dark matter and dark energy might exist but it seems to me that the standard model is just as likely to be incomplete or wrong. I am betting on the latter.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Mar 09, 2010
Nope, I compared the people ignorant to LHC risk to Germans, who voted Hitler. You even "cannot" get my analogies.

Perhaps the more apt comparison would be you to Goebbels.

Apt as you are persistent in stating contrary to observational statements with fervor all the while being denounced as incorrect. Problem for you is "tell a lie long enough and loud enough and all people will think it true", was already stated prior to your employment of the tactic.

Newtonian physics are mostly dead, long live reality.
RobertKLR
1 / 5 (1) Mar 09, 2010
"dark matter has become widely accepted in the physics community without its existence ever being concretely proven." ... ????? Hmmmm, proof isn't needed? Shades of global warming. Welcome to the new age of science.
JIMBO
not rated yet Mar 09, 2010
FOR THE THOUSANDTH TIME: the comment "ramped up to world record power later this month" is total BS. It is energy, not power, that is the relevant descriptor here.
Secondly, this story is total hype. The dark matter particle sought is the `neutralino', a candidate from the ranks of supersymmetry (SUSY). Every indication to date is that SUSY does not exist, at energy levels accessible to the LHC.
broglia
1 / 5 (1) Mar 10, 2010
..it is energy, not power, that is the relevant descriptor here...
Power is relevant too, until LHC sports both records in particle collisions.
..every indication to date is that SUSY does not exist...
I disagree, because many phenomena observed during high energy collisions at Tevatron and RHIC can be interpreted as a supersymmetry manifestation, too: for example formation of tetraquark, quark pairs, etc.

You should put the question, what the supersymmetry really is and in which way it should manifest itself during particle collisions?
broglia
Mar 10, 2010
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
broglia
1.5 / 5 (2) Mar 10, 2010
If we throw a stone into calm watter, a concentric ripples would spread from this place. But these ripples will not remain completelly unchanged - their wavelength would decrease gradually.

http://www.carden...ples.jpg

From perspective of remote observer this effect would appear, like every source of radiation is surrounded by sparse invisible massive field, which slows down the wave propagation - i.e. analogy of dark matter. Its origin is in dispersion of transversal surface waves by tiny density fluctuations, which are changing into longitudinal waves of underwater and in fact they're helping to increase this dispersion even more. The surface waves are changing into volume waves, during this. We can see, how tranversal waves undulating up and down are changing their orientation gradually and they're changing into waves, which are undulating back and forth. Such waves are covering complex manifold, which has character of Mobius strip or Klein bottle.
broglia
1 / 5 (2) Mar 10, 2010
The dispersive model based on presence of quantum fluctuations is not the only model of supersymmetry available. From perspective of relativity the vacuum is behaving like massive elastic foam or jelly, which undulates like urethane mattress. What will happen, if we start to jump on such mattress with increasing frequency?

Well, the mattress will undulate in torsion field, which is similar to surface of torroid. The undulation parts of mattress would rotate in space like gyroscope. If we increase frequency of jumps, the inertia of environment couldn't be neglected anymore - just the parts of mattress, which are rotating in fastest way will behave like rigid body - a vortex ring. And the surface of vortex ring will start to undulate in perspendicular direction - it will exhibit volume waves from the perspective of original undulations. In mechanics of elastic fluids such phenomena is called a Widnall's instability, which enables you to Google more informations about it.
broglia
1 / 5 (2) Mar 10, 2010
..."Christmas Church" should be Christian Church, of course..%-) But the communist party in former Soviet Union has started its life in similar way: from social tension between capitalists and laborers.

The social conflict between proponets and deniers of global warming enabled to grow various persons, which becomed famous just by their fight against or for concept of manmade global warming. These persons surrounds the camps of proponents and deniers from both sides of conflict like leaders of enemy trops - or like particles of dark matter are surrounding the surface of dense droplets of matter formed during collisions. These particles are volatile, because they evaporate fast into gravitons when quarkgluon condensate expands - but they should manifest by inbalance of mass of products during energetic collisions.

Now you should understand the motivations of supersymmetry theory at least in intuitive illustrative way.
broglia
1 / 5 (2) Mar 10, 2010
The explanation of dark matter by supersymmetric particles has no meaning, until supersymmetric particles will be completelly stable, because dark matter streaks are known to be stable. But from perspective of supersymmetry even electrons and positrons could be a supersymmetric particles, covering the surface of atom nuclei - in some theories electrons are formed just by photon wave which has character of Mobius strip.

http://members.ch...tron.pdf

The anihillation of positrons could explain 0.512 MeV signal observed recently near black holes and or stratosphere.

http://arxiv.org/.../0309686
broglia
not rated yet Mar 10, 2010
LHC to shut down for a year to address design faults

http://news.bbc.c...6621.stm

This is just an official version of the CERN announcement presented at public already..

Javinator
not rated yet Mar 10, 2010
Six degrees of separation: CERN --> Kevin Bacon coming up next from broglia.
JayK
1 / 5 (1) Mar 10, 2010
Kevin Bacon is the ultimate dark matter, according to broglia. That and he left his frisbee on broglia's roof. Kevin Bacon doesn't care.
Royale
5 / 5 (1) Mar 10, 2010
It's really funny to me that broglia had to wait three minutes to post each of those. i can just picture him drumming his fingers... a stopwatch maybe...
broglia
not rated yet Mar 11, 2010
I'm affraid, you're overidealizing the typing speed of non-native English writers (like me) a bit...;-)