Melissa Franklin on the Science of Smashing
Which is tougher, finding the world’s smallest particles with a multi-million dollar supercollider, or surviving the halls of the competitive, male-dominated Harvard Physics Department as a women? Melissa Franklin, who visited Big Think this week is the only person in the world who can answer this question—she’s done both. The particle physicist was the first to gain tenure at Harvard, and she has led some pioneering work at Fermilab, and soon will be helping in the operation of the latest giant particle smasher, the Large Hadron Collider (or LHC). We asked her how she got her start, what exactly a particle physicist does (and why), what the LHC will be able to do.
Giving our solar system a "slap in the face"
- A stream of galactic debris is hurtling at us, pulling dark matter along with it
- It's traveling so quickly it's been described as a hurricane of dark matter
- Scientists are excited to set their particle detectors at the onslffaught
The climate change we're witnessing is more dramatic than we might think.
Once again, our circadian rhythm points the way.
- Seven individuals were locked inside a windowless, internetless room for 37 days.
- While at rest, they burned 130 more calories at 5 p.m. than at 5 a.m.
- Morning time again shown not to be the best time to eat.
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