Europe’s premier research lab, CERN, is celebrating its 60th birthday, and the foundation of an establishment that in many ways drew up the blueprint for European co-operation.
CERN’s list of successes goes from inventing touch screens, medical imaging and the internet to the more esoteric pure physics most people normally associate with CERN and its huge arrays of particle accelerators and colliders.
General Director Rolf Heuer began the ceremonies, under the banner 60 years of science for peace, and then followed music composed specially for the occasion by a CERN scientist interpreting the recorded data from the LHC Higgs Boson experiments; LH Chamber music.
“It’s amazing to see how scientists and engineers from countries which are normally not at ease with each other can work together, can speak with each other and celebrate with each other. And I think that should be a model for everybody,” said Heuer.
But with the Higgs Boson all but nailed, where next for CERN? What are its future fields of study?
“With the famous Higgs Boson we have just closed our standard model, which merely describes 5% of the universe. 95% of the universe is dark: dark matter, dark energy. To my mind it’s high time
to enter the dark universe. And that would be one of the major goals for the nearer future,” says Heuer.
“For the past 60 years, CERN has not only revolutionised our scientific knowledge, but it has also created successful models of coexistence between different cultures and goal-sharing,” reports euronews’ Claudio Rosmino from the CERN laboratories in Geneva in Switzerland.