Feeds

Large Hadron Timewaster

No collisions till October at earliest

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The CERNocrats have decided it will be another few months before they can restart the world's biggest scientific money-smashing machine, the Large Hadron Collider.

The 17-mile underground money pit on the Swiss-French frontier will restart in September with a few Hadrons colliding in October, after which a Christmas shutdown will delay any more collisions until 2010.

The LHC has consumed around £4bn so far. A faulty electrical connection caused a £20m repair bill when the so-called largest machine in the world was switched on last September, possibly a record in the largest bucks for the smallest bang stakes. At the time, physicists predicted an early 2009 switch-on.

The idea of the LHC is that bits of atoms are smashed together to break into smaller bits of atoms to help us understand the origins of the universe.

It seems that, like fractals, which are infinitely complex at whatever scale they are examined, there will always be smaller bits of atoms inside the current smallest bits you are looking at. All you need is an ever-bigger hammer to deconstruct them and the LHC is just a waystation on the path to the ELHC (Even Larger Hadron Collider).

Physicists say they are on a noble quest to understand the fundamental structure of matter - but does it matter? At a cost of £4bn and counting as physicists look for ever smaller bits of things, how long will it be before fundamental research disappears up its own? ®

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
Asteroid's SHOCK DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck - boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Forty-five years ago: FOOTPRINTS FOUND ON MOON
NASA won't be back any time soon, sadly
Jurassic squawk: Dinos were Earth's early FEATHERED friends
Boffins research: Ancient dinos may all have had 'potential' fluff
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.