Thanks for an interesting questions. If you search google for the
particle-accelerator destroy universe
you will find several useful links on this subject. I'll highlight
some of them that directly answers your question, and you can read
others for extra information:
Will Brookhaven Destroy the Universe? Probably Not.
One idea was that a tear in space-time, perhaps caused by one of the
Tevatron's proton collisions, might bring on the collapse of the false
vacuum, annihilating all matter in the path of its collapse. The
collapse bubble would balloon outward at the speed of light,
eventually destroying the universe.
The trouble with this ingenious idea, physicists soon realized, was
that if such a catastrophe could occur it would have happened long
ago. The earth is constantly peppered by cosmic-ray particles, some of
which have energies 100 million times greater than the energies of
particles accelerated by the Tevatron or any other machine, and yet
the universal vacuum floor is intact and we, the earth and the
universe are still here. The Tevatron itself has been producing rich
discoveries for years, without endangering anyone.
So the trick will be sorting out the red herrings like accelerator
disasters and polywater from the real dangers. While we're at it, we
might quit basing self-esteem on the ability of the human race to
commit collective suicide.
Will Scientists Destroy the Universe?
Consider an experiment at Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long
Island, New York. In order to increase our understanding of the Big
Bang, scientists will use the world's most powerful particle
accelerator to fire gold ions through a magnetic switchyard.
So what's the problem? Some scientists think that, at least in theory,
the creation of QGP could trigger the formation of a type of subatomic
particle called stragelets which "eats" all matter it encounters. This
chain reaction would continue until all matter in the universe had
been converted into strangelets.
The chances of such a catastrophic event actually occurring are
extremely remote. But MIT physicist Bob Jaffe admits, "You never
Pushing the Limits of Science, and of Public Relations
An online news network reported that a "world-destroying black hole"
might be formed in experiments about to begin at the Brookhaven
National Laboratory on Long Island.
The problem with taking this literally, of course, is that the scale
is all wrong. The collision between a pair of gold nuclei is a whopper
on a subatomic scale.
But the total amount of energy in the collision is sufficient to heat
up a teaspoon of water by about one millionth of a degree. This
emergency would have to be multiplied by some incredible new chain
reaction even to be noticeable without sophisticated measuring
Hope this helps