Collider: The Search for the World's Smallest Particles

Collider: The Search for the World's Smallest Particles

by Paul Halpern

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An accessible look at the hottest topic in physics and the experiments that will transform our understanding of the universe

The biggest news in science today is the Large Hadron Collider, the world's largest and most powerful particle-smasher, and the anticipation of finally discovering the Higgs boson particle. But what is the Higgs boson and why is it often referred to as the God Particle? Why are the Higgs and the LHC so important? Getting a handle on the science behind the LHC can be difficult for anyone without an advanced degree in particle physics, but you don't need to go back to school to learn about it. In Collider, award-winning physicist Paul Halpern provides you with the tools you need to understand what the LHC is and what it hopes to discover.

  • Comprehensive, accessible guide to the theory, history, and science behind experimental high-energy physics
  • Explains why particle physics could well be on the verge of some of its greatest breakthroughs, changing what we think we know about quarks, string theory, dark matter, dark energy, and the fundamentals of modern physics
  • Tells you why the theoretical Higgs boson is often referred to as the God particle and how its discovery could change our understanding of the universe
  • Clearly explains why fears that the LHC could create a miniature black hole that could swallow up the Earth amount to a tempest in a very tiny teapot
  • "Best of 2009 Sci-Tech Books (Physics)"-Library Journal
  • "Halpern makes the search for mysterious particles pertinent and exciting by explaining clearly what we don't know about the universe, and offering a hopeful outlook for future research."-Publishers Weekly
  • Includes a new author preface, "The Fate of the Large Hadron Collider and the Future of High-Energy Physics"

The world will not come to an end any time soon, but we may learn a lot more about it in the blink of an eye. Read Collider and find out what, when, and how.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780470486214
Publisher: Turner Publishing Company
Publication date: 07/17/2009
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 288
File size: 868 KB

About the Author

PAUL HALPERN, PhD, is Professor of Physics at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. He is the author of numerous books, including The Great Beyond and What's Science Ever Done For Us?, both available from Wiley.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Paperback Edition: The Fate of the Large Hadron Collider and the Future of High-Energy Physics.


Prologue: Journey to the Heart of the Large Hadron Collider.

Introduction: The Machinery of Perfection.

1 The Secrets of Creation.

2 The Quest for a Theory of Everything.

3 Striking Gold: Rutherford’s Scattering Experiments.

4 Smashing Successes: The First Accelerators.

5 A Compelling Quartet: The Four Fundamental Forces.

6 A Tale of Two Rings: The Tevatron and the Super Proton Synchrotron.

7 Deep in the Heart of Texas: The Rise and Fall of the Superconducting Super Collider.

8 Crashing by Design: Building the Large Hadron Collider.

9 Denizens of the Dark: Resolving the Mysteries of Dark Matter and Dark Energy.

10 The Brane Drain: Looking for Portals to Higher Dimensions.

11 Microscopic Black Holes: A Boon to Science or a Boom for the World?

Conclusion: The Future of High-Energy Physics: The International Linear Collider and Beyond.


Further Reading.


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