Posted: May 09, 2017 6:08 am
by crank
I had to go wiki, found the entry on the 'Oh my god particle':
The Oh-My-God particle was an ultra-high-energy cosmic ray detected on the evening of 15 October 1991 over Dugway Proving Ground, Utah, by the University of Utah's Fly's Eye Cosmic Ray Detector.[1][2] Its observation was a shock to astrophysicists (hence the name), who estimated its energy to be approximately 3×1020 eV or 3×108 TeV. This is 20,000,000 times more energetic than the highest energy measured in electromagnetic radiation emitted by an extragalactic object[3] and 1020 (100 quintillion) times the energy of visible light. Therefore, the particle was an atomic nucleus with a kinetic energy of 48 joules, equivalent to a 142 g (5 oz) baseball travelling at about 26 m/s (94 km/h; 58 mph).[4]
This particle had so much kinetic energy it was travelling at ~ 99.999999999999999999999510% of the speed of light. As a result, its Lorentz factor was ~ 3.2×1011. This is so near the speed of light that if a photon were travelling with the particle, it would take over 215,000 years for the photon to gain a 1-centimeter lead.
The energy of this particle is some 40,000,000 times that of the highest energy protons that have been produced in any terrestrial particle accelerator. However, only a small fraction of this energy would be available for an interaction with a proton or neutron on Earth, with most of the energy remaining in the form of kinetic energy of the products of the interaction. The effective energy available for such a collision is qrt {2Emc2], where E is the particle's energy and mc2 is the mass energy of the proton. For the Oh-My-God particle, this gives 7.5×1014 eV, roughly 60 times the collision energy of the Large Hadron Collider.[5]