LHC Restarts

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yogi
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LHC Restarts

Post by yogi » 06 May 2015, 07:50

As I'm sure you know, the Large Hadron Collider at CERN has be down for maintenance the last year or two. It's being fired up again to continue it's work exploring the nature of sub-atomic particles. In order to do this they have to generate two beams of protons and aim them at each other so that the proton matter therein smashes into each other. These protons are so tiny that they can't be seen with a microscope, but what does it take to get them moving? At these early stages of testing the refurbished collider it takes 450 gigaelectronvolts (GeV) per beam. Well this is just the wind up because the full power mode will go up to 7000 GeV per beam. That's 7000 x a billion volts pushing around a beam of matter we can't see. The first question that comes to my mind is what kind of generator are they using to make that kind of electricity? All I can say is that I hope they find out something important. That's a lot of megabucks they are spending on playing with things too small to be seen.

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-32590036

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Kellemora
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Re: LHC Restarts

Post by Kellemora » 06 May 2015, 09:05

I'll bet they get a discount from the electric company too, hi hi...

We just toured ORNL last month, and walked around the reactor used to make the uranium for the bomb dropped by the Enola Gay.

They use a word which sounds like it means just the opposite of what it means.
When a Reactor reaches CRITICAL Stage, that is GOOD, it means it is working as expected.

Now to a lay person, hearing it has gone CRITICAL means the thing is about to explode, hi hi...

I don't know, but I think one of these days, the scientists are going to blow up the whole planet.
By this I mean, until they have DONE IT, how do they know what is going to happen?
They can estimate what will probably happen, and perhaps perform a few smaller tests, but some things can only be done in a big way.
Like how did they know BEFORE splitting the Atom the first time, that it wouldn't cause an unstoppable chain reaction?

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Icey
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Re: LHC Restarts

Post by Icey » 06 May 2015, 16:04

Scientists're trying to find unknown energy particles which resemble those thought to've been responsible for the Big Bang - e.g. the Higgs boson particle, but no one knows if it actually exists or if it's theoretically possible for it to be the basis of dark matter.

Haven't a clue why they should've spent so much money on this, or what good it might do.

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pilvikki
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Re: LHC Restarts

Post by pilvikki » 08 May 2015, 04:21

what I can't grasp is why it takes that kind of energy to shove around invisible dust bunnies... but then, i'm not a theorist, I like to see what i'm doing.

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yogi
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Re: LHC Restarts

Post by yogi » 08 May 2015, 07:35

Do you remember the days when your television had a CRT (cathode ray tube) for the picture? It took something in excess of 20,000 volts to get a stream of electrons from that skinny tube part to scan the screen you watched. The CERN scientists are dealing with protons here which are much heavier than electrons and they are shooting them into a circle that is several miles long.

Why are they doing it? It's pure research that will pay off in knowledge and understanding of the universe around us. And of course, anything can happen but scientists aren't going into this kind of research blindly. Much is known in advance and the experiments are just a way to prove the theories developed long ago.

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Kellemora
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Re: LHC Restarts

Post by Kellemora » 08 May 2015, 10:30

I have nothing against science trying to figure out how things work, and what benefits can be derived from same.

But when the topic of electricity comes up, most folks do not understand it enough, so either get scared or visualize things well beyond what is intended.

Voltage is only the difference in charge between two points, can be compared to pressure.
If you want to fill a glass with water, it doesn't matter if the water line has 30psi or 300psi.
At 30psi, if the valve is fully open, it may take a few seconds to fill the glass, but if you opened the valve fully at 300psi, it would probably blast the glass right out of your hand.

But that is what the valve is there to control. Electrically speaking, the valve gives resistance to the voltage, and only lets a little bit through. Not a good way of explaining it, but to keep with the analogy started above.

A valve more correctly controls current flow, but does so by adding resistance.

You step on your garden hose or kink it, and you get less water out the other end.
In the case of a garden hose, if you kink it to hold back the pressure, pressure builds up in the hose as the resistance of the hose itself is overcome and equalized. So, when you unkink the hose, you get a harder blast of water.

I never understood why water is often used to compare electrical properties, they are not exactly the same thing.

If you turn on a tap to fill a glass of water, the glass will eventually fill up and overflow.
However, if you turn on the switch to light a light bulb, no matter how high you turn the current flow, the light will only use what it was designed to use. A 40 watt lamp will use 40 watts, and a 60 watt lamp will use 60 watts, even if you have 2,000 or 20,000 watts available to it.

It is impossible to use water in a comparison to wattage without showing resistance, because in a water example, resistance will change the wattage, not allow the wattage to be the governor. The lamp itself is a resistor, but, it uses the resistance for a purpose, to light the lamp. Resistance in a water line only serves as a valve, and does no work other than blockage.

Amperage is the main key, and ohm's law is the rule.
You can easily get overcharged for your electric if the voltage drops below standard operating level.

R=V/I

A 40 watt 120 volt lamp on a 120 volt circuit has an R value of 3.
A 40 watt 12 volt lamp on a 12 volt circuit has an R value of 0.3
If a 40 watt 120 volt lamp running on 90 volts drops to an R value of 2.25 you are paying more to run the light at a lower output level.

I=V/R
The design voltage of a product, and its resistance determines the watt rating of the item.
So, if you are running a 120 volt lamp with a resistance value of 3, it is using 40 watts.
You pay for electric by the wattage you use per hour, measured in kilowatt hours.

Take this same bulb, designed for 120 volts, and have your house power drop to 90 volts, like during the dinnertime, everyone cooking time period.
The 120 volt lamp now with a resistance value of 2.25, due to the lower supply voltage is now drawing over 53 watts.
So, when the voltage drops, your cost to run the same things goes up, because it is based on wattage consumed over time.

This is also the reason a slighly low car battery zaps itself even faster when grinding over the motor. The current draw increases exponentially as the supply voltage decreases. At 12 volts your starter may hum like a kitten and keep spinning for a long time if necessary. But at 10 volts, the current required to spin it increases so much, it can zap that battery after only a few turns of the starter. You can definitely hear the difference while trying to start your car.

Since everything in your home is designed for 120 to 130 volts, having your power drop down even the slightest bit, to 110 volts or 116 volts even will cost you more than when it is operating at full design voltage.

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