Category: Martin Rees

For The Last Time: The LHC Will Not Make An Ea…

For The Last Time: The LHC Will Not Make An Earth-Swallowing Black Hole

“To prevent decay, new, unknown physics — for which no evidence exists — must be invoked.

Even if the newly created black hole were stable, it could not devour the Earth. The maximum rate it could consume matter is 1.1 × 10-25 grams-per-second.

It would take 3 trillion years to grow to a mass of 1 kg.”

Well, it was only a matter of time before someone trotted out the long-debunked claim that the LHC could possibly create an Earth-destroying black hole. I, like most of you, just didn’t expect that person to be the esteemed astronomer Sir Martin Rees!

Well, you’ll be happy to know that not only is his claim untrue, but it’s very easy to demonstrate why. You don’t have to point to cosmic rays (which are more energetic and have struck Earth for billions of years) or rely on anything we haven’t already directly observed. In fact, we can even imagine exotic scenarios that could result in the creation of a black hole, and even then, the Earth is entirely safe.

In less than 200 words, you, too, can learn why the LHC will not make an Earth-swallowing black hole. Sorry, all you armchair supervillains out there.