The particle accelerator in CERN - is this scary or what?

I’m not educated in advanced physics, but as I understand, the worst scenario is the creations black wholes that will destroy the earth.

The experiment is expected to happen this month

Seams a bit scary. :eek:

Yes. That is exactly what will happen. I will give you $1000US for all your stuff, which will, of course, be crushed into nothing a few short weeks from now.

In exchange, you can use that $1000 on anything you want.



You can educate yourself on the basics (and calm your fears) with a few trips to the library or a few evenings reading Wiki pages. If a black hole is created, it’ll be so minutely small and so short-lived that special highly-sensitive equipment will be needed to detect it, as opposed to a giant cataclysmic sinkhole in which oceans and mountains vanish in an instant.

Here are some past discussions on the topic:

Large Hadron Collider nearing completion
Large Hadron Collider: convince me to not be freaked out by this
Large Hadron Collider, Curiosity Killed the Cat?

In short - don’t panic.

Look on the bright side: now you can go ahead and max out your credit cards. Who’s going to collect?

Oh sure, you say that now, but what if this is the reason no extraterrestrials have visited Earth? What if civilizations who develop large hadron colliders don’t last long enough to develop intersteller travel. That could knock the Drake equation into a cocked hat by reducing the value of L, the length of time a civilization will last from the 10,000 years in the equation down to 100 years. That drops the number of communicating civilizations in our galaxy from 10 as calculated by Drake to 0.1.

I vote, “what”.


I agree wholeheartedly with Shodan.
checks for other signs of the Apocalypse

Holy crap! Did they fire that thing up today?!

So, if a teensy black hole did some how “escape and survive”… do you know what would happen?

Not much…

It sinks through the collision chamber at CERN, leaving a hole/trail that will quickly be filled in by quantum effects and brownian motion (as it is THAT small)…

It slowly grows in mass as it reaches the centre of the earth and then litterally would go into an internal orbit, growing in mass, but also losing orbital velocity and spiralling in to the center of the earth.

Where it would sit, in a little bubble of nothing (Vacuum), consuming nothing but the occasional stray atom… On the surface, we wouldn’t notice much. The perterbations ion the spin/orbit of the planet caused by such a situation would be too small to notice.

Now, to take this one step further… this may have already happened… there could well be a microscopic black hole at the centre of the earth.


My understanding is that the black hole will also be suspended from other matter magnetically, as the point is to make one particle collide with only one of another. This makes it harder, I’d think, for the BH to aquire much other matter, if any.

They are also traveling at very high speeds. I’d think even the gravitational pull of a BH, relative to size, would need much more time to start pulling matter into its

I used to be worried about this too but I was convinced by some of the people who know much more about science than I do - Stranger on a Train was one of them - that it’s really not such a big deal. (Two of those three original threads were started by me!) Read more about it and you may find it is less scary than it sounds. Now I love hadron.

Yeah, that’s pretty much what I’ve heard. If every black hole that popped into existence never evaporated the universe would be visibly missing huge chunks of it.

Racists! RACISTS! RACISTS! All of you!

It is a colorless, non-denominational, non-violent, absence of stuff spot. :smiley:

…in theory.

Barack Obama being the frontrunning Presidential candidate?

Eh, no. Hawking pretty conclusively demonstrated that such tiny, subatomic black holes will pretty much evaporate instantly (within something like 10[sup]-15[/sup] seconds.) Even at the speed of light, the putative BH could only travel about .003 mm before evaporating away into nothing.

Why the panic? Are they building a Death Star in Switzerland?

I thought Hawking Radiation was still theoretical?

I guess that is the worst scenario, pretty much, but it’s not something that is going to occur as the result of this experiment.