CERN July 5th particle accelerator myths debunked

CERN’s July 5 particle accelerator did not create a cosmic black hole. Nor can the machine shift time and space, as viral conspiracy theories claim.

On July 5, 2022, the European Organization for Nuclear Research known as CERN restarted their machine known as the particle accelerator. The machine returned to service today after a three-year upgrade and maintenance hiatus and will run for the next four years. The news caused conspiracy theories to circulate online, with people speculating as to what might happen after the machine was turned on.

Some people said turning on the accelerator would cause the Mandela Effect or the creation of false memories. Others said it could open a portal to another dimension or one black hole.

VERIFY audience member Wilson emailed to ask if CERN could open a black hole, which it is object in space so dense this light cannot escape him.


Can CERN’s particle accelerator open up a cosmic black hole?



That's wrong.

No, CERN’s particle accelerator cannot create a cosmic black hole. The machine also does not cause any temporal or spatial shift. The machine is used by researchers to analyze how particles work in the universe.


According to the US Department of Energy, a particle accelerator is a machine that accelerates the smallest known particles, such as electrons or protons, to very high energies.

CERN in Switzerland is the world’s largest physics laboratory, and CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is one of the largest particle accelerators in the world. In the accelerator, two high-energy particle beams move at almost the speed of light before they are forced to collide. The beams collide at four different locations where particle detectors are located.

According to CERN, the process shows scientists how the particles interact and “offers insights into the fundamental laws of nature.” The US Department of Energy has information on how particle accelerators work and how the technology has impacted basic research, medicine, consumer products and national security.

On July 5, scientists identified three never-before-seen particles. And contrary to viral theories, neither a portal to a new dimension nor a black hole was discovered. According to NASA, a cosmic black hole’s gravity is so strong that it can pull in and “eat” nearby material.

“For black holes, distant observers only see regions outside of the event horizon, but individual observers falling into the black hole would experience a very different ‘reality’. If you got to the event horizon, your perception of space and time would change completely. At the same time, the black hole’s immense gravity would squeeze you horizontally and stretch you vertically like a noodle, which is why scientists call this phenomenon (no kidding) ‘spaghettification,'” says NASA.

There is no evidence that this happened on July 5 after the LHC restarted.

Dejan Stojkovic, a physics professor at the University of Buffalo, told VERIFY in an email that current technologies are incapable of creating a cosmic black hole. Black holes form in space when certain stars much larger than the Sun collapse at the end of their lives.

“To create a black hole with our current technology, in the context of our standard gravity theories… we need an accelerator the size of the entire universe. So we should either drastically improve our technology or build a bigger accelerator,” said Stojkovic.

Some theories suggest the particle accelerator could form “quantum” black holes, but these would be microscopic, according to the CERN website.

A quantum black hole is different from a cosmic black hole. Instead of being formed by the collapse of stars, quantum black holes could be formed when protons collide.

“[Black holes] Concentrate a very large amount of matter in a very small space. They are so dense that the gravity they exert is so great that not even light can escape from them,” says CERN. “Black hole speculation at the LHC relates to particles formed when proton pairs collide. These are microscopic – or quantum – black holes. Scientists are not at all sure that quantum black holes exist.”

If the LHC created a black hole, it could confirm theories that the universe is capable of hosting other dimensions, says CERN. VERIFY asked CERN about the conspiracy theories surrounding their July 5 event. In an email, CERN said the theories were wrong and they hope people will focus on actual scientific research instead.

“CERN’s research captures many people’s imaginations, which is why CERN has been featured in many science fiction books and even films around the world. Inspired by our scientific research, these imaginative works are works of fiction created to capture the wonder of the reader or viewer and should not be confused with actual scientific research,” CERN told VERIFY.

The VERIFY team works to separate fact from fiction so you can understand what is true and what is false. Please consider subscribing to our daily newsletter, text notifications and YouTube channel. You can also follow us on Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok. Learn more “

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