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CERN library event

A crisis looms over the scientific enterprise. Not a day passes without news of retractions, failed replications, fraudulent peer reviews, or misinformed science-based policies. The social implications are enormous, yet this crisis has remained largely uncharted until now.

In Science on the Verge, luminaries in the field of post-normal science and scientific governance focus attention on worrying fault-lines in the use of science for policy-making, and the dramatic crisis within science itself. This provocative new volume in The Rightful Place of Science also explores the concepts that need to be unlearned, and the skills that must be relearned and enhanced, if we are to restore the legitimacy and integrity of science.

The book will be presented by one of the contributors, Mario Giampietro, ICREA Research Professor at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB).

"The rightful place of science: science on the verge", by Alice Benessia et al.,  Arizona State Univ., 2016, ISBN 9780692596388


Available at the CERN bookshop

What if you could become God, with the ability to build a whole new universe? As startling as it sounds, modern physics suggests that within the next two decades, scientists may be able to perform this seemingly divine feat-to concoct an entirely new baby universe, complete with its own physical laws, star systems, galaxies, and even intelligent life. A Big Bang in a Little Room takes the reader on a journey through the history of cosmology and unravels-particle by particle, theory by theory, and experiment by experiment-the ideas behind this provocative claim made by some of the most respected physicists alive today. Beyond simply explaining the science, A Big Bang in a Little Room also tells the story of the people who have been laboring for more than thirty years to make this seemingly impossible dream a reality. What has driven them to continue on what would seem, at first glance, to be a quixotic quest? This mind-boggling book reveals that we can nurse other worlds in the tiny confines of a lab, raising a daunting prospect: Was our universe, too, brought into existence by a daring creator?

Available at the CERN bookshop

Particle physics is the science that pursues the age-old quest for the innermost structure of matter and the fundamental interactions between its constituents. Modern experiments in this field rely increasingly on calorimetry, a detection technique in which the particles of interest are absorbed in the detector. Calorimeters are very intricate instruments. Their performance characteristics depend on subtle, sometimes counter-intuitive design details. This book, written by one of the world's foremost experts, is the first comprehensive text on this topic. It provides a fundamental and systematic introduction to calorimetry. It describes the state of the art in terms of both the fundamental understanding of calorimetric particle detection, and the actual detectors that have been or are being built and operated in experiments. The last chapter discusses landmark scientific discoveries in which calorimetry has played an important role. This book summarizes and puts into perspective the work described in some 900 scientific papers, listed in the bibliography. This second edition emphasizes new developments that have taken place since the first edition appeared in 2000.

Available at the CERN bookshop

Since its invention in the 1920s, particle accelerators have made tremendous progress in accelerator science, technology and applications. However, the fundamental acceleration principle, namely, to apply an external radiofrequency (RF) electric field to accelerate charged particles, remains unchanged. As this method (either room temperature RF or superconducting RF) is approaching its intrinsic limitation in acceleration gradient (measured in MeV/m), it becomes apparent that new methods with much higher acceleration gradient (measured in GeV/m) must be found for future very high energy accelerators as well as future compact (table-top or room-size) accelerators. This volume introduces a number of advanced accelerator concepts (AAC) — their principles, technologies and potential applications. For the time being, none of them stands out as a definitive direction in which to go. But these novel ideas are in hot pursuit and look promising. Furthermore, some AAC requires a high power laser system. This has the implication of bringing two different communities — accelerator and laser — to join forces and work together. It will have profound impact on the future of our field. Also included are two special articles, one on "Particle Accelerators in China' which gives a comprehensive overview of the rapidly growing accelerator community in China. The other features the person-of-the-issue who was well-known nuclear physicist Jerome Lewis Duggan, a pioneer and founder of a huge community of industrial and medical accelerators in the US.

Available at the CERN bookshop

For lovers of rhymes and anthropomorphic Higgs bosons, Symmetry presents its first published board book, The ABCs of Particle Physics. Use it as an illustrated guide to basic particle- and astrophysics terms, or read it to your infant at bedtime, if you don’t mind their first word being “quark.”

Archival historical image

A new group set up at CERN in the 1970s had rather different objectives to those of the rest of the laboratory. Their main task was to build a 3.6 metre telescope to be sent to Chile, following signature of a collaboration agreement between the ESO and CERN on 16 September 1970.


The first meeting of the coordinating committee two years later reviewed progress and confirmed that ESO’s Sky Atlas Laboratory was also welcome to continue their work of mapping the southern sky at CERN. The groups relocated to the ESO’s new premises at Garching, Germany, in 1980. See the committee report, read the press release and Professor Blaauw’s article in the August 1970 CERN Courier, or enjoy some more photos of the teams at work.

New book

The Grant Writer's Handbook: How to Write a Research Proposal and Succeed provides useful and practical advice on all aspects of proposal writing, including developing proposal ideas, drafting the proposal, dealing with referees, and budgeting. The authors base their advice on many years of experience writing and reviewing proposals in many different countries at various levels of scientific maturity. The book describes the numerous kinds of awards available from funding agencies, in particular large collaborative grants involving a number of investigators, and addresses the practical impact of a grant, which is often required of proposals. In addition, information is provided about selection of reviewers and the mechanics of organizing a research grant competition to give the proposal writer the necessary background information. The book includes key comments from a number of experts and is essential reading for anyone writing a research grant proposal.The Grant Writer's Handbook's companion website, featuring regularly updated resources and helpful links, can be found at

New book

Strong Interactions in Spacelike and Timelike Domains: Dispersive Approach provides the theoretical basis for the description of the strong interactions in the spacelike and timelike domains. The book primarily focuses on the hadronic vacuum polarization function, R-ratio of electron-positron annihilation into hadrons, and the Adler function, which govern a variety of the strong interaction processes at various energy scales. Specifically, the book presents the essentials of the dispersion relations for these functions, recaps their perturbative calculation, and delineates the dispersively improved perturbation theory. The book also elucidates the peculiarities of the continuation of the spacelike perturbative results into the timelike domain, which is indispensable for the studies of electron-positron annihilation into hadrons and the related processes.


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