Friday, April 3, 2015

C for CERN

Posting the A-Z of Dan Brown's books through his words, characters, places and more. Welcome to the A-Z April 2015 challenge...

C is for CERN

The CERN building

"The world's largest scientific research facility - Switzerland's Conseil Europeen pour la Recherche Nucleaire (CERN) - recently succeeded in producing the first particles of antimatter. Antimatter is identical to physical matter except that it is composed of particles whose electric charges are opposite to those found in normal matter.

Antimatter is the most powerful energy source known to man. It releases energy with 100 per cent efficiency (nuclear fission is 1.5 per cent efficient). Antimatter creates no pollution or radiation, and a droplet could power New York City for a full day.

There is, however, one catch . . .

Antimatter is highly unstable. It ignites when it comes in contact with absolutely anything . . . even air. A single gram of antimatter contains the energy of a 20-kiloton nuclear bomb - the size of the bomb dropped on Hiroshima.

Until now, antimatter has been created only in very small amounts (a few atoms at a time). But CERN has now broken ground on its new Antiproton Decelerator - an advanced antimatter production facility that promises to create antimatter in much larger quantities."

- from Angels and Demons, FACT page

The Large Hadron Collider at CERN

Atoms are sent whizzing around underground tubes like this in the Large Hadron Collider at CERN

The tubes comprising the Large Hadron Collider lie 175 metres under the ground and have a circumference of 27km. It is located near Geneva under the Swiss-French border


Empty Nest Insider said...

I'm glad I finally found your A to Z blog, Duncan! You've chosen such an original theme! What fantastic photos! I hope I'm not up all night worrying about antimatter. Oh well, at least I can catch up on blogging! I'm your newest follower - twice over! Good luck with the rest of A to Z!


Sara said...

Fun theme for a blog-I'm a big fan of Dan Brown's writing (as well as James Rollins, who's books I see in your blog header :) ). Good luck with the challenge!

Cathy Thorsen said...

Wow! Just wow! I wonder what protocols have to be put into place to safely work with antimatter. I'm excited to see another company working on solutions for the future of clean energy.

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