One of the most respected physicists of today, John Ellis of King’s College London, held a popular public lecture at the National Museum on Thursday, May 25, 2023. The event is part of the accompanying program of the LHCP conference, held in Belgrade from May 22 to 26, and organized by the Institute of Physics Belgrade and the Faculty of Physics of the University of Belgrade.
In the full National Museum’s Atrium, Professor Ellis spoke about the ideas that drive CERN researchers, but also about the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), which he described as the most powerful microscope used to investigate the tiniest particles and at the same time a powerful telescope that unravels the origin of the universe.
To understand the Big Bang and how the universe is expanding, it is necessary to create so-called small bangs using instruments such as the LHC.
The biggest result that the researchers working on the Big Collider have achieved so far is certainly the discovery of the Higgs boson. However, as Professor Ellis said in his lecture, this discovery is not the end of modern physics but the beginning of research for many unsolved questions such as dark matter, the relationship between matter and antimatter, and the origin of gravity.
Professor Ellis emphasized the importance of international cooperation in working on such large projects and noted that an important contribution to research at CERN is also made by a valuable group of physicists from Serbia.
Ellis also explained to the audience what the Standard Model of particles is, that is, the model that describes what all matter in nature is made of. The model was designed in the sixties of the last century and was confirmed by numerous experiments at CERN, and the last part of this puzzle is the Higgs boson, the particle that ensures that matter has mass. The existence of the so-called God particle was first confirmed by experiments performed at the LHC in 2012.