CERN Courier Mar/Apr 2021

Intersecting Storage Rings, the first hadron collider
CERN’s Intersecting Storage Rings, the first hadron collider (Image: CERN)

Welcome to the digital edition of the March/April 2021 issue of CERN Courier.

Hadron colliders have contributed to a golden era of discovery in high-energy physics, hosting experiments that have enabled physicists to unearth the cornerstones of the Standard Model. This success story began 50 years ago with CERN’s Intersecting Storage Rings (featured on the cover of this issue) and culminated in the Large Hadron Collider (p38) – which has spawned thousands of papers in its first 10 years of operations alone (p47). It also bodes well for a potential future circular collider at CERN operating at a centre-of-mass energy of at least 100TeV, a feasibility study for which is now in full swing.

Even hadron colliders have their limits, however. To explore possible new physics at the highest energy scales, physicists are mounting a series of experiments to search for very weakly interacting “slim” particles that arise from extensions in the Standard Model (p25).

Also celebrating a golden anniversary this year is the Institute for Nuclear Research in Moscow (p33), while, elsewhere in this issue: quantum sensors target gravitational waves (p10); X-rays go behind the scenes of supernova 1987A (p12); a high-performance computing collaboration forms to handle the big-physics data onslaught (p22); Steven Weinberg talks about his latest work (p51); and much more.

j CERN Courier Mar/Apr 2021