And, if so, would that be relevant to anything in this universe?

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    $\begingroup$ The LHC is nowhere near the energies close enough to the Big Bang. No machine the humanity could even dream to build in any distant future would ever be close. The physics shortly after the Big Bang is experimentally untestable. We can only try to deduce what was happening back then based on an indirect evidence. $\endgroup$
    – safesphere
    Jul 16, 2018 at 0:55
  • $\begingroup$ I don't think that the fact that the question makes a false premise (that the LHC tests energy levels close to those just after the Big Bang) justifies close votes. If the edit isn't too drastic, I would suggest a question like "Is it possibly to test collisions at energies higher than those achieved by the LHC? Would they be relevant to anything?" Those would be reasonable questions, though the answers are somewhat straightforward. Additionally, such an edit would invalidate the existing answer by Michael Seifert. (Or am I missing the intentions of the present close votes?) $\endgroup$
    – user191954
    Jul 16, 2018 at 13:40
  • $\begingroup$ @Chair the second part of the query (would they be relevant to anything) would be off-topic as too broad. $\endgroup$
    – Kyle Kanos
    Jul 17, 2018 at 10:04

1 Answer 1


I think you may have understood what is meant by "just after the big bang". According to the laws of physics as we currently understand them, the temperature in the immediate aftermath of the Big Bang was (roughly) inversely proportional to the square root of the time since the Big Bang: $T \propto t^{-1/2}$. In other words, it was about $1.3 \times 10^{10}$ K one second after the big bang; $1.3 \times 10^{11}$ Kelvin 0.01 seconds after the Big Bang; $1.3 \times 10^{12}$ Kelvin 0.0001 seconds after the Big Bang; and so forth. Extrapolating, you can find a moment some tiny fraction of a second after the Big Bang where the temperature was arbitrarily high. And the hotter the Universe was, the more energy the particles had at that time.

So when people say "the LHC is giving particles energies not seen since the moment after the Big Bang", what they really mean is something like "since $10^{-3}$ seconds after the Big Bang" or something like that. A particle collider with even more energy would be able to probe up energies that only existed $10^{-5}$ seconds after the Big Bang, and an even more powerful one would be able to probe energies $10^{-10}$ seconds after the Big Bang.

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you, that's exactly what I was looking for. My question was more related to the possibilities of finding further bosons, other than the gluon and W/Z particles, such as the 'graviton' using higher energies. Part of my contention to this is that the Higgs, if it give particles mass, ought to at least provide part of the picture of gravity; in a way similar to which the W and Z bosons mediate the Weak force. Perhaps there is some other component particle mediating gravity, but surely the Higgs is part of that. $\endgroup$
    – Sam Cottle
    Jul 16, 2018 at 14:54
  • $\begingroup$ @SamCottle: I would note that (a) the graviton is supposed to have zero mass, and so you don't need higher collider energies to produce it the same way you need them for massive particles like the Higgs; and (b) the mass/energy imparted by the Higgs field isn't particularly special when it comes to gravity. (For the latter point, see this answer.) If you have further follow-up questions about this, I'd encourage you to post them as new questions. $\endgroup$ Jul 16, 2018 at 15:08
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, but I was more trying to suggest that the 'graviton' as a virtual particle may, in reality, not be a single particle; it may be a process of some description mediated by more than one particle, like the weak force with the W and Z bosons. $\endgroup$
    – Sam Cottle
    Jul 17, 2018 at 0:48

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