My question involves my lack of understanding present in my thought experiment, so I am looking for corrections in my language or mental model.
At the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) collisions happen inside the ring at a predetermined spot covered in detectors. This inspection area is showered with particles. From my understanding the atoms or protons are annihilated into fragments of mass/energy that quickly dissipate into thermal energy as they travel through the detectors.
When colliding heavier nuclei like lead, I would imagine that there is a chance for some of these collision "fragments" to fuse before dissipating. Or for the particles to spontaneously create a proton. These protons are very corrosive to any metal surface it could come in contact with.
My question is three fold.
Is my mental model correct and there a chance of this fusion happening?
Wouldn't this contaminate the "inspection area" affecting the results of the next collision?