* Re "Super Collider is More Than Science," Commentary, Sept. 24: It is difficult for me not to be skeptical in the extreme as to the advisability of continuing with the superconducting super collider (SSC) at this particular time. Nina Byers and Roberto Peccei stated that more than $1.5 billion and a decade of work have been invested in this project. They claim further that "if the SSC is funded, it would cost less than $1 billion per year for the next 10 years"--only $10 billion!
The physicists claim also that the SSC would help us to understand this issue of "mass" and "dark matter" and the interaction of "quarks and leptons." And further that, "it is fun to think that when the super collider is turned on, millions of LSPs (lightest supersymmetric partners) will be produced in the plains of Texas to join the billions of their cousins that were produced after the 'big bang.' "
Sort of makes one wonder about "dark" and "quark" and "lark"!
* In order to convince most Americans that the superconducting super collider is worth keeping, Byers and Peccei should have done more to describe the practical benefits that might result from the SSC project.
Judging from their essay, the SSC project is, for all non-physicists, inconsequential--except of course for its billion-dollar price tag.
* Thanks to Byers and Peccei for explaining all about the superconducting super collider and its quarks, leptons and such. Now I have only one question: "Huh?"
* I wonder how many high school seniors and young college students bothered to read Byers' and Peccei's piece and understood any part of it. "Super science" has been, and continues to be, a constant drain on funds that could be better spent on providing American youth with both a foundation of basic knowledge and a desire to be informed.
LOUIS ST. MARTIN