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Collision of Atomic Particles

  1. Nov 6, 2015 #1
    At the LHC, particles are accelerated at near light speed to produce heavier particles in the collision E=mc2. Are the resulting particles in the collision produce the same fundamental atomic particles (electron, neutron, proton).
    What are the the chances of producing the same elementary particles so as, different unique particles.

    What are the insights can you formulate from the process of collision then?
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 6, 2015 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    1. depends on the specific energies and mix of particles... there are more that three different kinds of particle in Nature
    2. it depends on the specific energies and the mix of particles - the experiment is usually rigged to give a high probability of getting something interesting.
    3. usually the idea is to test some theoretical model for reality.
    For example, very high energy collisions were used to produce the higgs boson and so confirm an important aspect of the standard model.

    Think of it like this: you have two balls of dry clay and you are going to hurl them together so they smash and then try to track the bits that fly off.
    You are asking if the bits that fly off are the same as the lumps you smashed together, what the probabilities are of getting each of the different possible bits that could fly off, and what one coukd possibly learn from the exercise.
  4. Nov 6, 2015 #3


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    Protons, neutrons and electrons are produced in large amounts in the collisions, and they are exactly the same as every other proton, neutron and electron in the world.
    Other particles are created in large numbers as well. More than 10 particles in a collision are frequent, collisions that produce 100 new particles exist as well.

    The pion is the most frequent collision product, kaons, protons and neutrons are quite frequent as well, the other particles are less common.
    You can study how often which particle gets created, as function of the flight direction and energy of the particle, you can study the correlation between the production of particle 1 and particle 2 (or even more particles), you can study their lifetime, decay mechanisms, the angular distributions of the decay products, and so on. That allows to test theories predicting all those numbers.
  5. Nov 6, 2015 #4
    Interesting, but so far, we haven't yet created a stable particle right after collision? All of the energy that was transpired decayed consequently?
  6. Nov 6, 2015 #5


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    The collision products include stable particles, both produced directly and produced in the decays of unstable particles.
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