We’ve been over and over the fact that the chances the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest particle acclerator, will destroy the Earth are infinitesimal at best. But the doomsday crowd is still nervous, and growing more so as the official launch date—this coming Wednesday—draws near. In fact, The Telegraph reports, top physicists affiliated with the LHC have been receiving numerous nasty letters and even death threats from paranoid people.
Some call the public relations office with tearful requests to stop the project, CERN officials say, or send emails asking the scientists to reassure them that the world won’t come to an end next week. One of the angrier letter-writers says, “You are evil and dangerous and you are going to destroy the world.”
The scientists produced their last, best effort to reassure the people of Earth today in a full safety assessment report. It concludes that every day, cosmic rays in space produce collisions that are more powerful than the LHC could ever hope to match. If these powerful collisions could create the world-destroying hypothetical black holes everyone is so worried about, the study concludes, the Earth would’ve already been obliterated, and we wouldn’t be sitting here worrying about this.
Physicist Brian Cox of Manchester University puts it more caustically: “Anyone who thinks the LHC will destroy the world is a tw*t.”