Speaker:  Tomasz Taylor from CERN
We thank Tomasz Taylor for spending an evening with the Cohasset Rotary club.  For a brilliant man he had a way of making us non-scientists feel 'not too stupid' and was definitely entertaining!
Tom grew up in Poland and is a physicist.  Tom is an 'atom smasher' at CERN.  He currently is also a Physics professor at Northeastern University.  Atoms 101:
  • Atom is one billionth of a meter
    • nucleus with electrons that travel around it.
    • a nucleous of an atom has protons and Neutrons and Quarks
    • July 4, 2012 a new particle within an atoms was discovered.  'Hicks Boson' ('God's particle')
  • Atom smashers make atoms fall apart so that the physicists can see how they work and what they are made of
  • In Geneva Switerland there is a 17 mile circumference tunnel under the city where nuclear studies are done.
  • Nothing can move faster than light
    • atoms are moving at 99.99999% the speed of light
  • Why is this atom knowledge important?  Why do we care?
    • Electricity is due to electrons moving
      • electrons actually move at a snails pace, it is the 'signal to move' that moves quickly and makes a light turn on at the flipp of a switch
  • At CERN there would be 2000-3000 people working on 1 experiment.  In order to communicate, they needed the convenience of internet so Tim Berners at CERN invented the internet decades ago.
  • MRI are using magnets and atoms to view non-invasively what is happening in the human body