Media Advisory: Yale Scientists Available to Speak About Large Hadron Collider

Yale scientists involved with the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will be available to speak with the media about the start-up of the LHC, the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator, before it begins operations on Sept. 10.

Keith Baker and Paul Tipton, both professors of physics at Yale, will use the LHC to investigate dark matter – that elusive substance which neither emits nor absorbs light but accounts for approximately 25 percent of the universe’s mass.

Specifically, Baker and Tipton will search for a new particle responsible for dark matter. Whether dark matter is made up of ordinary particles has been one of the most hotly debated questions in cosmology in recent years. The two particle physicists will carry out their experiments using ATLAS, one of two general-purpose detectors at the LHC.

The Large Hadron Collider is scheduled to begin operating Sept. 10, when scientists will send the first beam of protons barreling through the 17-mile-long accelerator at nearly the speed of light. Located at the CERN laboratory near Geneva, Switzerland, the LHC has cost $8 billion and taken nearly 15 years to complete. Physicists will use the LHC to search for the hypothesized, but not yet observed, Higgs boson. Dubbed the “God particle,” the Higgs boson explains why every other particle has mass and would provide the missing link in the Standard Model – our current theoretical understanding of particle physics.

The LHC was built in collaboration with thousands of scientists from hundreds of universities across the globe, including Yale. Its American collaborators include the federal Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation and the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

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Suzanne Taylor Muzzin:, 203-432-8555