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Surprising Science

Hadron Colliding

The Large Hadron Collider has suddenly burst into life and started smashing proton beams together for the first time.

“After embarrassing breakdowns caused by bread-dropping birds and hugely expensive repairs, the world’s biggest science experiment – the Large Hadron Collider – has suddenly burst into life and smashed together proton beams for the first time. Scientists operating the giant £6 billion machine at Cern, the nuclear research body near Geneva, said yesterday that they had finally succeeded in making low energy proton collisions, which could eventually provide clues about the first Big Bang and the origins of the universe. Rolf-Dieter Heuer, Cern’s director, described the outcome as a ‘great achievement’. He said that as the machine had only been switched back on last Friday, the results were very impressive. ‘The experiment has come a long way in such a short time,’ he said. ‘But we need to keep a sense of perspective, there is still much to do.’”


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