Angels & Demons: The Science of Antimatter and the Large Hadron Collider
UA physicist Erich Varnes will discuss the science behind the upcoming movie Angels & Demons

By Mari N. Jensen, College of Science
May 8, 2009

In the upcoming movie "Angels & Demons" – a story from the author of "The Da Vinci Code" – some bad guys steal antimatter from CERN, a nuclear research laboratory on the Swiss/French border, and use it to make a bomb with which they intend to destroy the Vatican.

If you've ever wondered what antimatter is and if one can really make a bomb from it, or if you are curious about what really goes on at places like CERN, known as the European Organization for Nuclear Research, come to the public lecture, "Angels & Demons: The Science of Antimatter and the Large Hadron Collider."

Erich Varnes, an associate professor of physics at The University of Arizona, will talk about the physics behind the movie.

Varnes is part of the team of UA physicists working on the ATLAS detector, one of the experiments that is part of the Large Hadron Collider.

The lecture will be held May 13 at 8 p.m. in Harvill Rm. 150 and is free and open to the public. Visit the UA physics department Web site to download and view a color flyer for the event.

The UA is one of more than 30 North American colleges, universities and national laboratories hosting "Angels & Demons" lecture nights.

Sony Pictures Entertainment will release "Angels & Demons," a major motion picture based on Dan Brown’s best-selling novel and starring Tom Hanks and directed by Ron Howard, in North America on Friday, May 15.

Worldwide, scientists working on experiments at the Large Hadron Collider, or LHC, will host lectures and other Angels & Demons-related events for the press and the public. Lectures are planned at particle physics institutions across Europe, Asia and the Americas.

The LHC is the world's largest particle collider and the largest scientific instrument ever built. The experiments conducted using the LHC will provide fundamental discoveries about the matter that makes up our universe.

The UA is the only university in Arizona involved with the LHC. The international effort involves 2,500 scientists from 37 countries. The LHC is operated by CERN.

The UA's Department of Physics and the UA College of Science are sponsoring the lecture. CERN, Fermilab, the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy have provided additional support.

Extra info


Public Lecture: Angels & Demons: The Science of Antimatter and the Large Hadron Collider


Harvill Building, Rm. 150


Wednesday, May 13 at 8 p.m.



Parking in the surface lots at The University of Arizona is generally free after 5 p.m. Pay parking is also available in the Park Avenue garage (corner with Speedway Boulevard.) and the 2nd Street garage (corner with Mountain Avenue). Additional information is available at the UA Campus map and UA parking map



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Claudia Miller

UA Department of Physics