But on Facebook, there’s posts calling CERN “a demonic/Evil machine that opens up portals to other dimensions/Hell/other spiritual worlds” and “brings in demons wicked spirits/High Evil Principalities.” And USA Today reports that similar posts making that same claim “have amassed hundreds of interactions on Facebook and Twitter.” (Their article then goes on to assure readers that “the claim is baseless.”)
In fact, USA Today’s “Fact Check” feature spent some time investigating the claims of a demonic machine opening portals to hell, and after exhaustive research can report that at this time “There is no evidence scientists at CERN are engaged in anything other than scientific-related activities.”
Physics experts told USA TODAY scientists use the Large Hadron Collider to collide particles at very high energies to study matter. There is no truth to the claim that scientists at CERN are communicating with demonic entities and using the collider to open up a portal to hell, Dejan Stojkovic, a physics professor at the University at Buffalo, told USA TODAY in an email.
The physics behind his explanation is interesting:
“To create a black hole or a wormhole, even microscopic ones, with our current technology, in the context of our standard theories of gravity, we need an accelerator as big as the whole universe,” Stojkovic said. “So there is no chance whatsoever to create such a portal at the [Large Hadron Collider].”
“Since these are previously unexplored energies in a controlled environment, we might expect production of some new elementary particles that we did not know if they existed,” Stojkovic said. “However, these are microscopic particles, so there is no chance such a portal would open.”
Facebook has now attached a warning to its user’s post about a demonic machine opening up portals to hell, notifying users that the post contains “False information.” (It adds that this assertion has been “checked by independent fact-checkers,” linking back to USA Today’s article for support.)
USA Today ends its analysis with a definitive summation:
Based on our research, we rate FALSE the claim that scientists at CERN are communicating with demonic entities and opening a portal to hell. There is no evidence scientists at CERN are engaged in anything other than scientific-related activities. The collider cannot open up portals to other dimensions. Experts said scientists use the machine to collide particles at very high energies to study matter….
Our fact-check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.
Thanks to Slashdot reader Iamthecheese for sharing the story!
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