The Future of [Experimental Particle] Physics in the Times

I was impressed (like Mark Trodden) by the lovely pictures, good PR, and even some lyrical prose on CERN‘s coming Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in the New York Times. But I was annoyed by this statement:

For the past generation, physics has been in something of a rut. There have been plenty of findings from smaller colliders, but the results have mostly been expected.

There’s more to physics than just experimental particle physics: cosmology, for example, which has certainly not been in a rut (and let’s hope we’re not about to get into one).

One response to “The Future of [Experimental Particle] Physics in the Times”

  1. Andy Lawrence avatar

    an argument could be made that particle physics and cosmology are in fact in a very similar state – standard models defined by exquisitely measured parameters that really can’t go much further, but with fundamental things completely unexplained – where do those quark masses come from ? what is the vacuum energy ? Some grand theory awaits .. but meanwhile we are running up against a brick wall.
    Contrast this with other areas of physics – quantum optics, extrasolar planets, soft condensed matter – which are still a mess, but at least there are still surprises …