About Colliding Particles
The Project



The Large Hadron Collider at CERN will look deeper into the nature of the universe than anything that has gone before, and its’ vast experiments are certain to change our understanding of the world around us. The scale of the engineering involved can sometimes obscure the fact that the project is designed and run by people - hundreds of teams of researchers and collaborators, all driven by the simple desire to increase our understanding of the universe we live in.


‘Colliding Particles’ is a series of films following just one of the teams of physicists involved in the research at the LHC. The project documents their work at the frontiers of particle physics, exploring the human stories behind the research and investigating the workings of the scientific process itself.

The Physicists
Gavin Salam
  • Gavin Salam

  • Gavin is a theoretical particle physicist at the French National Centre for Scientific Research in Paris. He completed his PhD at Cambridge in 1996, and went on to hold postdoctoral fellowships in Milan and at CERN. His research has mostly been centred on the area of quantum chromodynamics, the theory which describes the behaviour of quarks and gluons. He likes to play the piano in his spare time.
Jonathan Butterworth
  • Jonathan Butterworth

  • Jon is an experimental particle physicist at University College London, and a member of the ATLAS collaboration at the LHC. He completed his doctorate at Oxford in 1992, and worked on the ZEUS experiment at DESY in Hamburg. He divides his time between CERN and London, where he lives with his wife and 2 children. In his spare time he skis and plays the guitar.  He blogs on the Guardian science blogs network here.
Adam Davison
  • Adam Davison

  • Adam studied at University College London for his undergraduate degree and decided to stay on at UCL for his PhD. Although he currently works at CERN in Switzerland he still tries to spend time back in the UK. In addition to particle physics, he is also works on the Mixxx Digital DJ project and plays 5-a-side football.
Production Team

Mike Paterson – Producer/Filmmaker

David Sang – Educational Resources
David is physics editor of Catalyst Magazine: www.sep.org.uk/catalyst


Rosie Walton – Science Advisor

Rosie is an editor at the Institute of Physics Publishing:


Matthew Share – Sound Recordist

Jim Le Fevre – Animation

Tanera Dawkins – Music

Taiyo Nagano – Website

Colliding Particles is sponsored by the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s (STFC) Science in Society Programme. The STFC operates world-class, large-scale research facilities; supports scientists and engineers world-wide; funds researchers in universities and provides strategic scientific advice to government.