These folks certainly aren’t dummies, but they’re guilty of a pretentiousism, using a fancier word than necessary, and in this case, the word is also incorrect. First the sentence:
Each of those 200-odd collisions generated enough energy to make two charm-flavored quarks, which weigh more than the lightweight quarks that comprise protons, but less than the gigantic “beauty” quarks that are LHCb’s main quarry..
- The sentence should have “compose,” which starts with the parts that then make a whole thing. They could even have said “…that make protons.”
- “Comprise” starts with the whole thing, then mentions its parts. The early United States comprised 13 colonies.
At least they didn’t write “comprised of.” Gack.
Here’s a picture that goes with the article: