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Particle Fever: Physicists Just May be the New Rock Stars

Fri, 03/07/2014 - 10:36am
UC Santa Cruz

A Higgs boson decays to 4 leptons in this collision recorded by the ATLAS detector on May 18, 2012. Courtesy of ATLASParticle Fever, an award-winning documentary that has garnered international attention, follows six brilliant scientists during the launch of the Large Hadron Collider at the CERN facility in Switzerland, marking the start-up of the biggest and most expensive experiment in the history of the planet, pushing the edge of human innovation. As they seek to unravel the mysteries of the universe, 10,000 scientists from over 100 countries joined forces in pursuit of a single goal: to recreate conditions that existed just moments after the Big Bang and find the Higgs boson, potentially explaining the origin of all matter.

The Telegraph UK calls the film “a brilliant documentary … particle physicists just may be the new rock stars.”

Billions of dollars and countless hours have been poured into this international undertaking, in hopes of discovering some of the most basic elements that make up the universe. Most notably, the Higgs boson particle.

Imagine being able to watch as Edison turned on the first light bulb, or as Franklin received his first jolt of electricity. For the first time, a film gives audiences a front row seat to a significant and inspiring scientific breakthrough as it happens.

But our heroes confront an even bigger challenge: have we reached our limit in understanding why we exist?

Directed by Mark Levinson, a physicist turned filmmaker, and masterfully edited by Walter Murch (Apocalypse Now, The English Patient), Particle Fever is a celebration of discovery, revealing the very human stories behind this epic machine.

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