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Collider: The Search for the World's Smallest Particles 1st Edition
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Content from Paul Halpern
Browse Photos of the Collider (Click on image to enlarge)Hardcover edition.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
More About the Author
Halpern's latest book, "Einstein's Dice and Schrodinger's Cat," investigates how physicists Albert Einstein and Erwin Schrodinger battled together against the incompleteness and indeterminacy of quantum mechanics. Their dialogue inspired Schrodinger's famous thought-experiment about a cat in a box that is in a mixed state between life and death until it is observed. They struggled to find a unified field theory that would unite the forces of nature and supersede quantum weirdness. Sadly they would never find success and their efforts would lead to a fiasco.
More information about Paul Halpern's books and other writings can be found at:
Top Customer Reviews
The long-awaited moment when the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN goes online has generated a great deal of excitement and (through misinformed press coverage) fear and trepidation. In `Collider' Halpern eloquently explains what the LHC is, how it will work, and what scientists will be looking for when it is operational.
The purpose of the LHC is to recreate the conditions which are thought to have existed less than a trillionth of a second after the Big Bang that birthed our universe. To help readers grasp the enormous potential of the discoveries that could be made, Halpern takes the reader on a thrilling adventure story that traces the footsteps of the scientists whose discoveries have pinpointed the extraordinary forces that created and sustain this planet that we call home.
Peppered with entertaining anecdotes and analogies which clarify the scientific principles, `Collider' is clearly a labour of love for its author. Halpern's highly infectious passion for science transmits itself through every page, and his explanations of the principles lend fuel to the imagination and generate a sense of wonder. The chapters take us on a compelling journey through subjects which include the standard model and the four forces, relativity, supersymmetry, the theory of everything, dark energy and dark matter, black holes, strangelets, wormholes and higher dimensions, describing what the LHC could divulge of these. The book concludes with the future plans for the Super LHC and the International Linear Collider.Read more ›
As strange as it might seem, the LHC is potentially much more amazing and wonderful than any silly doomsday scenario. And Paul Halpern's Collider will show you why. It is the perfect book to read while waiting for CERN to finally work out the kinks and start pushing particles.
In Collider, Halpern offers a clear and compelling explanation of the science behind high energy physics, and the history behind the creation of the LHC. Then he ties together both of these threads -- the history and the science -- to provide context for the search for the Higgs boson, and what that discovery could mean to our understanding of the universe. Halpern presents an overview of physics in the sort of plain, readable prose that makes you wish somebody had explained it to you this way long ago.
And, yes, he also tackles the claims that high-energy physics will destroy existence. (SPOILER: It won't!)
If you are, like me, awed by science and its practitioners, I think you could have no finer guidebook to the LHC than Paul Halpern's Collider.
Moreover, it's a tall order that's less about content and more about the way you tell it. Happily, in `Collider - the search for the world's smallest particles' - Paul Halpern tells it well.
Anchoring the core physics around a theme is helpful: whether it's Brian Greene on string theory or Paul Davies on the search for extra terrestrial life or, as in Halpern's case, the physics, technology and people that have advanced our understanding of the subatomic world.
Collider is a story of impressive people building big machines to smash small particles together to reveal big truths. With CERN's Large Hadron Collider (LHC) limbering up under the Franco-Swiss countryside, the timing couldn't be better.
At 232 pages before the notes, Collider is manageable without being superficial, and has sufficient pace and variety to engage even those for whom memories of high-school science induce a cold sweat (and for whom leptons is just another brand of tea).
Tracts of quantum weirdness interspersed with biographical vignettes and discussions on collider engineering should ensure a broad spectrum of readers stay the distance. Those led out of their depth, however gently, will find delightful pangs of (at least partial) understanding along the way. Personally, the engineer in me found particular joy in the mix of ethereal concept and enabling technology that particle physics, perhaps more than any other field, embodies. Halpern as a physicist clearly enjoys and respects all aspects of the endeavour.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent all the way around. I would buy from them again. Very satisfied overall.Published 15 months ago by William Riddel
I had this one on the self for a while, so I figured I give it a read, and I was not disappointed. I do find that books written by scientists show a poor understanding of history,... Read morePublished 18 months ago by The History Detective
If you're thinking of buying this book to get an insight into the LHC and its development, walk away now. Read morePublished on September 2, 2011 by EmMar
A book that shows you the way slowly, flanked by three separate introductory segments is poised for demystifying those cursory preliminaries. Read morePublished on August 11, 2011 by D. Wayne Dworsky
The excerpt from the front flap of this book is misleading. More of this book refers to the historical search for smaller and smaller particles and to other detectors, than to the... Read morePublished on July 9, 2010 by Rebecca
I applaud any new attempt to explain how the world works, particularly those authors brave enough to run right to the cutting edge of our understanding. Read morePublished on June 12, 2010 by J. Brian Watkins
What an immensely comprehensible and well-paced, entertaining read. Paul Halpern draws back the veil of scientific jargon to illustrate the exciting discoveries and history of... Read morePublished on November 16, 2009 by String
Paul Halperin's book, Collider, portrays the historic march of discoveries and the theoretical physics leading to the construction of the Large Hadron Collider which is expected to... Read morePublished on November 15, 2009 by Ralph White