Has the Large Hadron Collider accidentally thrown away evidence for New Physics?


EXCERPT: . . . Earlier this month, the LHC celebrated 10 years of operation, with the discovery of the Higgs boson marking its crowning achievement. Yet despite these successes, no new particles, interactions, decays, or fundamental physics has been found. [...] here is no indication of physics beyond the Standard Model in the results. [...] Worst of all is this: most of CERN's data from the LHC has been lost forever.

This is one of the least well-understood pieces of the high-energy physics puzzle, at least among the general public. The LHC hasn't just lost most of its data: it's lost a whopping 99.9999% of it. That's right; out of every one million collisions that occurs at the LHC, only one of them has all of its data written down and recorded.

It's something that happened out of necessity, due to the limitations imposed by the laws of nature themselves, as well as what technology can presently do. But in making that decision, there's a tremendous fear made all the more palpable by the fact that, other than the much-anticipated Higgs, nothing new has been discovered. The fear is this: that there is new physics waiting to be discovered, but we've missed it by throwing this data away.

We didn't have a choice in the matter, really. Something had to be thrown away. The way the LHC works is by accelerating protons as close to the speed of light as possible in opposite directions and smashing them together. This is how particle accelerators have worked best for generations. [...] The problem that then arises, however, is in taking all of that data and recording it. The detectors themselves are big [...] In order to record data, there are two steps that must occur:

The data has to be moved into the detector's memory, which is limited by the speed of your electronics. Even at the speed of light, we can only "remember" about 1-in-1,000 collisions.
The data in memory has to be written to disk (or some other permanent device), and that's a much slower process than storing data in memory. Only about 1-in-1,000 collisions that the memory stores can be written to disk.

That's why, with the necessity of taking both of these steps, only 0.0001% of the total data can be saved for analysis. [...] The total amount of data that's been collected by the LHC far outstrips the total amount of data sent-and-received over the internet over the last 10 years. But only 0.0001% of that data has been written down and saved; the rest is gone for good.

It's eminently possible that the LHC created new particles, saw evidence of new interactions, and observed and recorded all the signs of new physics. And it's also possible, due to our ignorance of what we were looking for, we've thrown it all away, and will continue to do so. The nightmare scenario — of no new physics beyond the Standard Model — appears to be coming true. But the real nightmare is the very real possibility that the new physics is there, we've built the perfect machine to find it, we've found it, and we'll never realize it because of the decisions and assumptions we've made....

MORE: https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswitha...8272879270
Sounds like an excuse to keep the hopes for scientism alive. "There is new physics that does answer some deep questions and disprove religion, but we lost it. I mean, it just can't end with the Standard Model." Rolleyes

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