Plus: LHC Smashes Particle Collision Record and Chocolate 3-D Printer Now Available to the Masses.
LHC Smashes Particle Collision Record
Last week the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world’s most powerful particle accelerator, shattered its own world record by smashing protons together with a combined energy of 8 teraelectronvolts (TeV).
“The previous world record was 7 TeV, the energy at which the LHC operated from March 2010 to last October. Then, protons zipped around the accelerator’s 27-kilometer-long loop at speeds high enough for each to carry 3.5 TeV, so that collisions between pairs carried an energy of 7 TeV,” New Scientist explains. “That was enough energy for two of the LHC’s experiments to provide hints of the Higgs boson, the long-sought particle that would complete the standard model of particle physics, and explain how all other particles get their masses.”
In honor of last week’s breakthrough, and on the heels of Easter, below is a diorama of marshmallow Peeps operating the LHC, designed and constructed by physics researchers Marilena Loverde and Laura Newburgh. (For a detailed look at the Peeps at work, check out Discover magazine’s Cosmic Variance blog.)
Chocolate 3-D Printer Now Available for Purchase
Chocolate lovers rejoice: you can now print your own custom-made sweets, layer by layer. The world’s first 3-D chocolate printer, developed by a team at the University of Exeter, allows users to create their own designs on a computer and reproduce them physically in three-dimensional form using chocolate in lieu of the standard plastic or resin.
Now Choc Edge, a spin-off company from the university, has made the delightfully innovative desktop chocolate factory available for purchase.
According to the company’s website:
Choc Creator Version 1 is accepting online orders today. Choc Creator is a simple, yet versatile desktop 3D chocolate printer. It [has] been developed for creative users who love to experience new technologies, exploit broad technical settings and boundaries of the printer, and [have] a lot of fun with their creations.
Choc Edge is offering the printer at a discounted price of £2,488 (about $3,500) if you’re one of the first 90 people to preorder it. In addition, 10 Choc Creators will be auctioned on eBay. The auction for the first printer ends April 20.
RMS Titanic By the Numbers
One hundred years ago this weekend, the famed Titanic struck an iceberg and sank just five days into its maiden voyage.
It took three years and cost $7.5 million (equal to $167 million today) to build the world’s largest ship at the time, which set sail less than 75 percent full and housed 16,850 bottles of wine on board.
Discover a number of other interesting facts with the History Channel’s new “Titanic By the Numbers” infographic.