401: Large Hadron Collider

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Large Hadron Collider
When charged particles of more than 5 TeV pass through a bubble chamber, they leave a trail of candy.
Title text: When charged particles of more than 5 TeV pass through a bubble chamber, they leave a trail of candy.


The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is the world's largest particle accelerator, used in physics research, and particularly for finding the Higgs Boson. The Higgs Boson is a particle which gives other particles their mass and until its first discovery in 2012, tentatively confirmed to exist in March 2013, it was the last particle of the Standard Model of Physics not to have been experimentally confirmed.

At the time of this comic's writing, the LHC was nearing completion, and the comic imagines technicians working at the LHC and not having any visual confirmation of what happens. Since they can't see the Higgs Boson, they can only wait for the theorists to determine what actually happened. The comic jokes that the bored technicians try frying pigeons with the proton stream and instead end up giving helicopters cancer which is impossible. This is because the stream is contained within the LHC, and non-organic entities can't get cancer. However, the proton stream may cause considerable damage to pigeons as the U-70 synchrotron did to Anatoli Bugorski in 1978.

At that time there was also a big concern by some people that the LHC could produce microscopic black holes. However, cosmic rays regularly strike Earth's atmosphere with particles at higher energies; thus, if the proposed doomsday scenario were possible it should have already happened. Many jokes where published like this video "LHC End of The World Black Hole".

The title text makes another joke about the effects of highly charged particles, claiming that when they pass through a bubble chamber (an older particle detection device) they leave a trail of candy.


The Large Hadron Collider, CERN...
Megan: Okay, moment of truth. "click"
Large Hadron Collider: "VVVVVRRMMMMM"
Cueball: Do you see the Higgs Boson?
Megan: Nope.
Cueball: Huh.
Megan: Well, then.
Cueball: Until the theorists get back to us, wanna try hitting pigeons with the proton stream?
Megan: Already on it. Cool! I just gave a helicopter cancer.

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Why is there is a link to some Higgs Boson music on this page? -- ‎ (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Probably to rub it in that the Higgs Boson is well in our past now. Davidy22[talk] 04:46, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
Eeyup. /from the one who put the link/ Greyson (talk) 18:09, 28 June 2013 (UTC)

Apropos to birds, there was a mishap at the LHC involving a piece of bread dropped from a bird. That occurred months after this comic was made. --Quicksilver (talk) 04:36, 21 August 2013 (UTC)

As I see it, they are experimental physicists. They see the data, they do not find the Higgs boson, now it is the theoretical physicists' turn to find a new explanation of massive particles. Undee (talk) 12:40, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

Or, better yet, a new way of finding the Higgs. Anonymous 22:18, 3 December 2013 (UTC) (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)