Risk Evaluation Forum

The newly reconstructed Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN in Europe is in the process of starting up. It is expected to reach design energy of 14 TeV in May 2015, barring startup delays. This is twice its former energy.

A new paper published in Physics Letters B, and available online, predicts black hole production in the range of 11.9 TeV, if certain theories are true. Its citation is given in our references section, accessible by clicking below.

Black hole creation on Earth seems unwise. Strangely enough, this has been controversial.

The Collider Controversy

There has been much serious discussion of production of dangerous objects by colliders. See our reference section, accessible by clicking below. The risk may be small because theories that enable trouble are speculative, but they are serious theories. Most aspects of these theories have been published in peer-reviewed journals. The risk is also small due to various safety considerations, but those safety considerations have repeatedly evaporated under scrutiny, requiring successive new safety studies. For more on this, see our "discussion of the problem" page, accessible by clicking below. Current safety considerations make things somewhat safer because they require another level of speculative physics to transcend those safety considerations, but reasonable theories that get around the safety considerations exist, so the risk is not zero. CERN has claimed zero risk. That is nonsense, reflective of the unfortunate craziness attending this controversy. It is precisely equivalent to that famous phrase, "Nothing can possibly go wrong."

Policy implications are complex. Risks should be compared with benefits. CERN is not making this comparison, because they claim that there are no risks. We say a bit more about this on in our "discussion of the problem" page, accessable by clicking below.

About Risk Evaluation Forum

We hope to consider philosophical and management issues presented by positive and negative technological singularities. The negative versions can be existential risks, i.e. risks to the existence of humanity. At the moment, (and for years at this site) we are focused on an issue that is emergent right now: the collider controversy.

More Pages:
Discussion of the problem
Forum (Letters and articles published here)
References and links to published articles
Our recent news release
Book writing project: Management of Positive and Negative Singularities
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