CERN opened a “portal” on July 5, 2022.
CERN, the French-language acronym for the European Organization for Nuclear Research, has long been the target of fantastical conspiracy theories.
So it should come as no surprise that on July 5, 2022, when CERN scientists commissioned the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) after three years of upgrades and maintenance, some conspiracy theorists cheered too.
For example, one Twitter user suggested that CERN was opening a “portal” of astrological proportions, indirectly noting that this portal was related to an early summer sky show with a rare planetary alignment.
The text of the post reads:
Everyone get ready for July 5th. That’s all I’m saying. Protect your energy. be vigilant. Don’t do anything that lowers your vibration, energy, or focus. CERN will open a portal on July 5th. They began preparing when the planets aligned on June 24th. This will be
Other posts echoed the same sentiment, including a widely publicized story on video sharing platform TikTok in which the user claimed the LHC was opening a portal to the future – while the theme song of Netflix sci-fi series Stranger Things was playing ( its plotline has an alternate dimension). On another video platform, YouTube, another user agreed that there was a portal opening; In this version, however, the portal was to hell.
While it is true that, as noted above, CERN began operations at the LHC after a lengthy downtime for upgrades and maintenance, there is no evidence that CERN provided a portal to the future, to Hell, or to any dimension other than the current has opened, or that it has opened a black hole, as some have postulated.
In a press release, CERN said the LHC’s activities on July 5 were notable not because they made the “Stranger Things” storyline a reality, but “recorded high-energy collisions at an unprecedented energy of 13.6 TeV.”
CERN is a research facility outside of Geneva, Switzerland, and on its campus is the LHC, which consists of a 17-mile electromagnetic tunneling infrastructure where scientists bang pieces of atoms into each other to make discoveries about the properties of space. In 2012, CERN researchers identified the Higgs boson, described by The New York Times as “a long-sought particle that gives mass to every other particle in the universe.”
In their current run, scheduled to run through 2025, the researchers hope to answer some of the universe’s great, existential questions, as characterized by the Times: “Where did the universe come from? Why is it made of matter and not antimatter? What is the “dark matter” permeating the cosmos? How does the Higgs particle itself have mass?”
As intriguing as this may sound, the LHC has never lacked attention from conspiracy theorists. For example, in 2016, some netizens misused a photographer’s image of a storm over Switzerland to falsely claim that CERN had opened a portal to another dimension. Another rumor, circulated again in 2016, falsely claimed that a video depicting a human sacrifice at the facility.
Goodbye Dennis. “As the Large Hadron Collider heats up, physicists’ hopes rise.” The New York Times, June 13, 2022. NYTimes.com, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/13/science/cern -hadron-collider-muon-leptoquark.html.
“The third run of the Large Hadron Collider has started successfully.” CERN, July 5, 2022, https://home.cern/news/news/cern/third-run-large-hadron-collider-has-successfully-started.