Another Understanding question (not homework)

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In summary, the discovery of elementary particles relied on advancements in particle accelerator technology because these particles needed to be broken apart in order to understand their makeup. The larger the particle, the more energy was required to reach their collision energies. This is discussed in detail in "A Brief History of Time" by Stephen Hawking.
  • #1
quickslant
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Another comprehension question is for me to understand why the discovery of elementary (fundamental) particles depended on advances in particle accelerator technology?

Can somone explain this to me?
 
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  • #2
you might want to read a brief history of time by hawking. it goes into detail about particle acceleration and other things. i just read it myself but barely understood anything.

-Amy
 
  • #3
I think that the simple answer is that you generally have to break things apart to find what they are made of. And the binding energies of smaller, more fundamental particles are large enough, that it takes bigger and bigger accelerators to reach those collision energies.
 
  • #4
lol.. i figured it out.. thanks..
 
  • #5
Huge energies (accelerations) are required to produce these particles. You might want to look at the rest mass of some of the fundamental particles
 

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