A physicists' playground powers up

This summer, the most elaborate physics laboratory on earth will come to life. The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) recently completed its Large Hadron Collider (LHC) – a 16.7-mile ring of magnets that loops deep beneath the Swiss-French border.

The cavernous $6 billion lab hosts a massive particle accelerator. Researchers will fire beams of protons in opposite directions around the track. Then, once the particles near the speed of light, magnets will slam the protons together, creating new types of particles. Researchers hope this collision will recreate the conditions that existed when the universe was a trillionth of a second old. One key objective: hunting down the particle that physicists theorize gives matter its mass – and maybe stumbling upon new discoveries along the way. More information and pictures of the LHC appear in the May/June issue of Technology Review.

Share this story:

We want to hear, did we miss an angle we should have covered? Should we come back to this topic? Or just give us a rating for this story. We want to hear from you.

Loading...

Loading...

Loading...

Save for later

Save
Cancel

Saved ( of items)

This item has been saved to read later from any device.
Access saved items through your user name at the top of the page.

View Saved Items

OK

Failed to save

You reached the limit of 20 saved items.
Please visit following link to manage you saved items.

View Saved Items

OK

Failed to save

You have already saved this item.

View Saved Items

OK