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Searching for New Forces with the Large Hadron Collider Oct. 31

large hadron colliderDr. Stefan Spanier, professor of physics at the University of Tennessee, will present “Searching for New Forces with the Large Hadron Collider” at the next UT Science Forum Friday, Oct. 31.

The discovery of a candidate for the Higgs particle with the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) of CERN in Geneva Switzerland in 2012 is a strong support of the mathematical concepts behind our present theory of the microscopic world. But there is evidence that our present understanding is still very limited.

Open questions are for example: Do the fundamental forces unite? This is Einstein’s dream, but while seeing evidence that at higher energies the strengths of fundamental forces move toward each other they do not exactly unite.

How does the gravitational force fit in?  It is considered negligible for the understanding of interactions between elementary particles, but this might change with the LHC: some theoreticians predict that at the higher energy it might be possible to create micro black holes.

Are there particles responsible for dark matter and dark energy? Is there more than one Higgs particle? And many more…

Next year the LHC will restart at higher energy and higher beam intensity to search for new forces that might help us to arrive at a more comprehensive theory of nature.

The UT Science Forum is free and open to the public. Each presentation takes place in the Thompson-Boling Arena Cafe, Room C-D from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. Presentations are usually 45 minutes with a question and answer session to follow.