Monday, September 8, 2014

Stephen Hawking: God particle could wipe out the universe

In a preface to a new book, the famed physicist fears the Higgs Boson becoming unstable and causing a "catastrophic vacuum decay." But how likely is that really? 


Stephen Hawking seems to have turned into the man with the sandwich board that says: "The end is nigh."

Not only has he warned us that aliens might destroy us, but he's also been worrying that artificial intelligence might do the same.

Now he's perceiving a threat that might not merely put an end to Earth, but to the whole Universe.

As the UK's Sunday Times reports, Hawking is worried about the God particle. This, discovered by physicists during experiments within CERN's Large Hadron Collider, is a vital ingredient to explaining why things in our world have mass.

However, in a preface to a new book called "Starmus" -- a collection of lectures given by famous scientists and astronomers -- Hawking worried that the Higgs Boson might become unstable.

He wrote: "The Higgs potential has the worrisome feature that it might become metastable at energies above 100bn gigaelectronvolts (GeV)."

What might this lead to? Hawkins explained: "This could mean that the universe could undergo catastrophic vacuum decay, with a bubble of the true vacuum expanding at the speed of light. This could happen at any time and we wouldn't see it coming."

For the rest of the story: http://www.cnet.com/news/stephen-hawking-god-particle-may-wipe-out-the-universe/

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