The Large Hadron Collider just keeps confirming the Standard Model, almost as if there was some basis for believing it to be correct:
Are new particles materializing right under physicists’ noses and going unnoticed? The world’s great atom smasher, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), could be making long-lived particles that slip through its detectors, some researchers say. Next week, they will gather at the LHC’s home, CERN, the European particle physics laboratory near Geneva, Switzerland, to discuss how to capture them. They argue the LHC’s next run should emphasize such searches, and some are calling for new detectors that could sniff out the fugitive particles.
It’s a push born of anxiety. In 2012, experimenters at the $5 billion LHC discovered the Higgs boson, the last particle predicted by the standard model of particles and forces, and the key to explaining how fundamental particles get their masses. But the LHC has yet to blast out anything beyond the standard model. “We haven’t found any new physics with the assumptions we started with, so maybe we need to change the assumptions,” says Juliette Alimena, a physicist at Ohio State University in Columbus who works with the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS), one of the two main particle detectors fed by the LHC.Adrian Cho, “Atom smasher could be making new particles that are hiding in plain sight” at Science
Various proposals are underway to look for “odd events” and “fringe” long-lived particles. We asked Rob Sheldon, our physics color commentator, for a comment:
The problem is that atom smashers have not found any new particles since the Higgs, and that means the “standard model” hasn’t been updated since about 1982. In desperation, experimentalists are suggesting building more detectors placed far away from the usual ones, in the hope that perhaps some of the particles are “long-lived” and slippery, so they would only appear some distance away. Of course there’s some theory or another about this, but what we are really seeing is desperation.
As Sabine Hossenfelder would say, there’s no shortage of wrong theories, so there must be something broken about our theorizing. Einstein said that repeating a failed approach is a clear sign of insanity. My way of saying it, is that there are an infinite number of wrong theories, so despite the brave face put on it, disproving another dozen won’t get us any closer to the truth. If you don’t know where you are going, you will certainly arrive. Information is finite, ignorance infinite.
He adds, “Yet another way to say Darwin was doomed.” (He must have been reading recent biology news.)
See also: Rob Sheldon: That “sterile exoplanet ocean” paper is bunk! The amazing thing about life, is that it is always so very adaptable. Who knew that bugs can live at 140C, or with metabolism so slow it takes centuries to replicate?
Exoplanets: Those water worlds would have sterile oceans too… Researchers: An all-ocean planet would be sterile due to lack of nutrients leached from land.
Rob Sheldon: The real reason there is a crisis in cosmology Nearly everything that has failed about the Big Bang model has been added because of bad metaphysics, a refusal to accept the consequences of a beginning. The remaining pieces of the Big Bang model that are failing and which can’t be attributed to bad metaphysics, were added from sheer laziness.
Doubt cast on new “exomoon”: Rob Sheldon explains Sheldon: There are red flags all over this data, but the investigators are standing by their measurement. This is what irreproducible papers look like in physics, and why the same crisis that afflicts other disciplines also afflicts physics.
Rob Sheldon: Here’s why physicists are surprised by the universe’s increased expansion rate The two methods differ in that one is “direct” and the other “indirect”. Clearly one or both of them is making a mistake. Since it is hard to find (and people have looked) a reason why the direct method is failing, the feeling is that the indirect method must have a mistake in its model.
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