Neil Calder, Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, 650-926-8707, firstname.lastname@example.org
Judy Jackson, Fermilab, 630-840-3351, email@example.com
May 9, 2006
Particle Physics Panel Launches “Discovering the Quantum Universe” Report
Washington—Scientists of the High Energy Physics Advisory Panel, a group of distinguished physicists that provides advice to the Department of Energy’s Office of Science and to the National Science Foundation, today (May 9) announced the launch of a new publication that explains the excitement of 21st-century particle physics to audiences who are not science experts.
Dr. Raymond L. Orbach, Director of DOE’s Office of Science, presented the publication, “Discovering the Quantum Universe,” at a briefing today to members of Congress and their staffs.
"Physicists will soon have the tools to make discoveries that promise to revolutionize our concept of the universe," Orbach said recently. "The new publication from HEPAP, 'Discovering the Quantum Universe,' tells a compelling story, explaining in clear and simple language, what all the excitement is
about. Never again will our views of the physical universe be the same."
Physicists Joseph Lykken, of DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and James Siegrist, of DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, chaired the subpanel of physicists, cosmologists and science communicators that produced the new publication and its companion Web site at http://www.quantumuniversereport.org.
“We wanted to convey the revolutionary nature of today’s particle physics to people who might not be familiar with the field,” Lykken said. “For example, we now know that ninety-five percent of the universe is not made of everyday matter but instead consists of dark matter and dark energy. What are these mysterious dark components of the universe? This report explains how the next generation of experiments at particle accelerators will stretch our imaginations with new forms of matter, new forces of nature and new dimensions of space and time. We wanted to share our excitement about the discoveries ahead in terms accessible to everyone.”
The new publication, a companion publication to the earlier “Quantum Universe,” published by HEPAP in 2004, describes the role of particle colliders, the mammoth particle accelerators that are the basic tools of particle physics, in answering fundamental questions about the universe.
In a related report, released on April 26, by the National Academies of Science and Engineering, the Committee on Elementary Particle Physics in the 21st Century recommends that the United States remain globally competitive in particle physics. The report, “Revealing the Hidden Nature of Space and Time,” further recommends that the U.S. exploit the opportunities at the soon-to be completed Large Hadron Collider at the European Laboratory for Nuclear Physics in Geneva Switzerland; and that it prepare to “mount a compelling bid to build the proposed International Linear Collider on U.S. soil.”
University of Chicago physicist Melvyn Shochet, chair of HEPAP, highlighted the role of both of HEPAP’s “Quantum Universe” publications in explaining the science that motivated the EPP2010 Committee’s recommendations.
“I encourage anyone with an interest in our nation’s science policy to read the ‘Quantum Universe’ publications,” Shochet said. “It is our hope that they convey the compelling nature of the science ahead and make clear why the United States should continue to take a leadership role in the science of particle physics.”
Copies of “Discovering the Quantum Universe” may be ordered free of charge on line at http://www.quantumuniversereport.org or downloaded from the same Web site.