University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy

Physics and Astronomy Colloquium

Wednesday, January 28th 2009
3:35 pm:
Speaker: Misha Voloshin, University of Minnesota
Subject: Spontaneous and induced creation of semi-classical objects. (Is it safe to run high-energy colliders?)

Semiclassical objects: solitons, bubbles, black holes, etc., can be viewed as field configurations consisting of very many quanta. In certain situations such objects can be formed spontaneously “out of nothing” or/and be produced in a thermal bath or in particle collisions. Some of them, if actually produced in a laboratory, may lead to catastrophic consequences. The impossibility of such a doomsday-type outcome of running high-energy accelerators has been fully tested “experimentally” by the cosmic ray collisions over the history of the Universe. I discuss possible theoretical explanations of this encouraging “experimental result”.

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