The Particle at the End of the Universe: How the Hunt for the Higgs Boson Leads Us to the Edge of a New World
Sunday, November 18, 2012 at 2 pm
Baxter Lecture Hall
- Tickets: First come, first served at the door. Seating is limited. $10 for Skeptics Society members and the JPL/Caltech community, $15 for nonmembers. Your admission fee is a donation that pays for our lecture expenses.
Scientists have just announced an historic discovery on a par with the splitting of the atom: the Higgs boson. The key to understanding why mass exists has been found. In The Particle at the End of the Universe, Caltech physicist and acclaimed writer Sean Carroll takes you behind the scenes of the Large Hadron Collider at CERN to meet the scientists and explain this landmark event. What is so special about the Higgs boson? We didn’t really know for sure if anything at the subatomic level had any mass at all until we found it. The fact is, while we have now essentially solved the mass puzzle, there are things we didn’t predict and possibilities we haven’t yet dreamed. A doorway is opening into the mind boggling, somewhat frightening world of dark matter. We only discovered the electron just over a hundred years ago and considering where that took us—from nuclear energy to quantum computing—the inventions that will result from the Higgs discovery will be world-changing.
NOTE: I have heard Sean Carroll speak several times, and he gives an excellent talk that is also entertaining. After the lecture, Dr. Carroll usually joins the skeptics for dinner at Burger Continental, and I've found him quite personable and approachable. His wife, Jennifer Ouellette, author of "The Physics of the Buffyverse" and "The Calculus Diaries: How Math Can Help You Lose Weight, Win in Vegas, and Survive a Zombie Apocalypse", usually joins us at Burger Continental too.
Even if this subject doesn't interest you, I highly recommend attending this lecture as it will be both interesting, entertaining and you'll be surprised.
Due to the popularity of Sean Carroll, it is strongly suggested that you arrive 45-60 minutes early to the lecture venue to assure a seat.
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This lecture will also be available via streaming.