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    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7626256.stm

    Well, not meltdown, but a quench is reasonably serious. It'll take ages to fix whatever problem it is and then cool it down again.
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    I said this would happen....it would work at first but then some mechanical error would make it break. Id be surprised if they got it working again and actually discovered something in the next year.
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    This is what we get for employing the Americans to make the magnets. They were reponsible for the last big problem. I wonder if it's them again.
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    Aww damn, I was just hoping this was a link to the webcam showing a black hole developing, not something real!
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    Could someone explain exactly what happened, I can't find a more descriptive link
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    (Original post by snaude)
    I said this would happen....it would work at first but then some mechanical error would make it break. Id be surprised if they got it working again and actually discovered something in the next year.
    To be fair it is the most complicated machine ever built, there were bound to be a few bugs. I'm sure they'll get it back in full working order soon enough.

    They can't turn it on fully until the spring anyway, so there's plenty of time to sort this out.
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    LHC is a synchrotron. This means that it needs to use magnets to bend particle paths into a circular orbit.
    The stronger the magnet the smaller the ring needs to be.
    The strongest magnets in the world are superconducting magnets. Unfortunately so called high temperature super conductors still require emense cooling to work in super conducting states. This is either done by liquid nitrogen (for very high T SC) or by liquid helium.
    Liquid Helium is an extremely difficult chemical to work with.
    But a quench basically is when you rapidly dump the coolant from the magnets and bring them up to above their transistion temperature (making them no longer super conducting magnets).

    PS I think you have misunderstood the schedule for the LHC. We aren't running real shots through the LHC not because 'its not spring yet'. But because its a very complicate machine with lots of parts that need to be working together perfectly. So each component has to be tested and tweeked and calibrated perfectly.

    Just to give you and idea how perfectly it needs to be, the predecessor of the LHC, the LEP, used to lose beams everyday twice a day, during the early hours around 8ish and again about 6ish. It turns out that the reason for this was that the increase in train frequency in the nearby town of Genenva caused EM changes that messed up the perfectly tuned magnetic field.

    So basically any delays now would push the schedule back.
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    (Original post by Mehh)
    PS I think you have misunderstood the schedule for the LHC. We aren't running real shots through the LHC not because 'its not spring yet'. But because its a very complicate machine with lots of parts that need to be working together perfectly. So each component has to be tested and tweeked and calibrated perfectly.
    I know that one of the reasons is that they need to calibrate it, I do understand what the LHC actually does and how it works. However, one of the reasons they have to wait until spring is that it uses so much power that if they turned it up to full power now, the city of Geneva would not have enough power left to allow the people there to heat their homes. Therefore waiting until the winter is over is the only way they can turn it on without making people freeze.


    (Original post by Mehh)
    So basically any delays now would push the schedule back.
    Sure it would, but at this stage it's not as big a deal as it could be since they have plenty of time before they can turn it on properly.
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    (Original post by gateshipone)
    I know that one of the reasons is that they need to calibrate it, I do understand what the LHC actually does and how it works. However, one of the reasons they have to wait until spring is that it uses so much power that if they turned it up to full power now, the city of Geneva would not have enough power left to allow the people there to heat their homes. Therefore waiting until the winter is over is the only way they can turn it on without making people freeze.
    It's true - I think CERN has to shut down completely for 3-4 weeks over winter because of clauses in the contract with its French electricity supplier. I also heard that the LHC will require at least twice the power of the city of Geneva!

    Sure it would, but at this stage it's not as big a deal as it could be since they have plenty of time before they can turn it on properly.
    Estimates on the delay are around two months at the moment. The schedule has definitely been pushed back.
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    does this mean we are going to die?
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    This is really disappointing. It's such a shame that the project's probably not going to go ahead until next year now because of the Winter shutdown.
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    (Original post by neon)
    does this mean we are going to die?
    :rolleyes:

    No.
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    (Original post by Mad Vlad)
    :rolleyes:

    No.
    phew
 
 
 
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