Find your own minifigs boson!
A new LEGO ideas project is ready to be accelerated into the public. It’s a mini particle accelerator based on the Large Hadron Collider — affectionately dubbed the Large Brick Collider. The LEGO setup may be only 0.01% the size of the 17-mile ring deep beneath the Swiss/French border, but it has its own protons to accelerate, an atom to smash, observing scientists, a track, and a working motor.
Particle accelerators are arguably the largest and most complicated machines ever created, speeding up particles with giant magnets to nearly light-speed. These beams of particles are steered to meet an atom or other particle introduced into the ring and collide to (hopefully) reveal something fundamental the universe — like throwing a rock into a pond to study the ripples. The LEGO particle accelerator is a bit slower, but maintains the spirit of the experiment.
Jason Allemann of JK Brickworks first came up with this awesome idea as a gag, but quickly discovered that building a “working” particle accelerator out of LEGOs wasn’t so ridiculous. In fact, we think getting more sets like this — near-accurate representations of scientists and their work — would go a long way towards interesting the next generation of builders, inventors, and scientists in STEM fields at an early age. And it would make a great addition to grade school science classrooms.
Don’t get us wrong, a LEGO AT-AT is absolutely awesome, but so is fantasizing about smashing stuff together at light-speed to reveal the fabric of the universe.
You can watch a fun video of LEGO scientists searching for some new physics with the set below: