(TELEGRAPH) — Former Harvard professor Shahriar Afshar said that failure to find the particle would bring current scientific theory tumbling down like a house of cards with nothing to replace it.
The controversial physicist, whose Afshar experiment has already found a loophole in quantum theory, said that unless the scientific community starts contemplating a “plan B”, failure could lead to “chaos and infighting”.
He said failure will undermine more than a hundred years of scientific theory and undermine some of the mainstays of scientific thinking, the Standard Model, a general theory of how particles fit together to create matter.
Professor Afshar said that it will be two or three years before the huge machine in Switzerland that cost £4billion to build can be judged as a success or a failure.
But he believes that the hype surrounding the particle accelerator has meant that if it fails to establish anything – a strong possibility in his eyes – it will lead to disillusionment with science.