Sunday, 27 October 2013

Mini Pumpkin Collider

Today my partner brought home a pumpkin to carve for halloween. Since I've never carved a pumpkin before (I know! How sad!) he left the decision of what to carve up to me.

Pretty cool. But not my pumpkin.
Last year he kindly carved a rather ordinary face, so I wanted to do something different. At first I was very tempted to go with some of these amazing designs, although I realised pumpkin carving skill was a missing factor.

So I did what every sensible person does and asked on twitter what I should carve, which revealed this design of DNA. Cool, huh?

But that's biology. I'm a physicist. But it got me thinking... this years most welcome news in my field was the recent awarding of the Nobel Prize to Higgs and Englert. Well, there was only one thing I could carve.

I asked my partner for help but he declared I was simply too much of a geek (which I took as a compliment in this instance) and that I was on my own.

Dear readers, I present you with my very own Mini Pumpkin Collider:

The mini pumpkin collider.

For those of you in the know, that is a representation of a Higgs decay in the CMS event display. A little bit like this one.
I've borrowed this image from CMS, sorry guys).
Protons collide in the CMS detector at 8 TeV, forming Z bosons which decay into electrons (green lines) and muons (red). Such an event is compatible with the decay of a Standard Model Higgs boson (Image: CMS)
My pumpkin-friendly version of the event display.
You're welcome to steal it as a template but I'm sure your own would be better!

Carved and waiting to be lit up to recreate the big bang!

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