Feeds

LHC boffins turn lead into quarko-gluotic Big Bang incrediblo-stuff

Particle-pummelling primordial plasma pulchritude

Business security measures using SSL

International boffins are vying with one another in a race to topsy-turvinate the world of physics this week, with a flurry of results due in imminently from radical fabric-of-time-and-space-rending experiments at the Large Hadron Collider - most brutally powerful particle-pummeller ever assembled by the human race.

“It is impressive how fast the experiments have arrived at these results, which deal with very complex physics,” says atom-smashing bigwig Sergio Bertolucci in a statement issued ahead of blockbusting boffinry announcements scheduled for Thursday.

“The experiments are competing with each other to publish first, but then working together to assemble the full picture and cross-check their results. It’s a beautiful example of how competition and collaboration is a key feature of this field of research.”

In recent weeks, the mighty Collider has changed modes. When initially fired up following lengthy repairs (necessitated by a catastrophic electro-blast-triggered helium superfluid explosion mishap in 2007) the LHC was colliding protons. Lately, however, it has instead been powering heavier lead ions around its twin 27km magnetic motorways, and crossing the two streams over inside its huge underground detector-instrument experiment caverns. This causes the ions to crash into one another head on while travelling within a whisker of the speed of light. (See the vid above.)

The conditions created during the tiny but incredibly, inconceivably violent particle prangs replicate those seen at the very dawn of time itself, very soon after the Big Bang, in an era when the entire gigantic vastness of the universe was all somehow packed down so small that it was smaller than one of today's atoms.

Regular atoms are made up of such things as protons and neutrons, which could of course never have existed back in the immediately post-Big Bang era. Instead, the quarks – which make up the protons and neutrons – nowadays firmly stuck together with gluons, rambled about madly in unstructured, elemental-particulate free love style in a setup known as a "quark-gluon plasma".

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
SCREW YOU, Russia! NASA lobs $6.8bn at Boeing AND SpaceX to run space station taxis
Musk charging nearly half as much as Boeing for crew trips
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.