Geneva | One of CERN’s top scientists has been arrested after “highly dangerous operations” were conducted under his authority at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider based in Geneva.
Russian physicist Alexandreï Ziouganov has been accused of “breaking CERN security rules” by “attempting highly risky and dangerous maneuvers” after he urged technicians to push the giant 27 km long particle accelerator to its limits, avoiding potential warning signs given by his coworkers while intoxicated by alcohol and under heavy medication.
The operation is believed to have caused an earthquake of 3.2 magnitude on the Richter scale, comparable to the impact of a large lightning bolt, assess experts.
« No serious damage was dealt to the Large Hadron Collider but several hyper-capacitors were damaged during the tests »
– CERN spokesman, Olaf Gaardsteen
A history of recklessness
The Russian physicist known for his bold character has been an outspoken CERN critic since he joined the team of international scientists nearly 5 years ago.
“He is a man of extremes” explains his coworker, Romanian physicist Yuri Malania. “He is possibly one of the 100 most brilliant minds in the world, but his character is like that of an erupting volcano. He wants everything to go faster, he strongly believes we are decades backwards in science. He wishes humanity would already be colonizing Mars and the Moon, he wishes to leave his mark and push the limits of science into the 21st century,” he adds.
In a 2013 interview with Russian science magazine атомный, the physicist known for his outspokenness said that CERN scientists “were a bunch of wimps”, “incapable of understanding the importance of this technology” and that “they would never understand his genius”.
Creating a black hole
The controversial physicist is also known for his obsession with dark matter and black holes.
“His dream is clearly to recreate a black hole within the LHC” explains French science journalist, Jeanne Legrand.
“He has always been a strong supporter within the European scientific community of increasing the capacities of the LHC and is at the origin of the highly controversial proposition of the LHCx, a process which would accelerate particles at speeds a thousand times faster, although most scientists do not approve of such tests for the moment,” she explains.
Last year his controversial views and statements on the LHC provoked a wave of hysteria after Pope Francis warned such tests could “have disastrous consequences for humanity” and could “open the gates of Hell”.