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LARGE HADRON COLLIDER

LARGE HADRON COLLIDER

  • The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is the world’s largest and highest-energy particle accelerator. It was built by the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) over a ten year period from 1998 to 2008, with the aim of allowing physicists to test the predictions of different theories of particle physics and high-energy physics, and particularly for the existence of the hypothesized Higgs boson and of the large family of new particles predicted by supersymmetry.
  • It contains six detectors each designed for specific kinds of exploration.
  • The LHC lies in a tunnel 27 kilometres (17 mi) in circumference, as deep as 175 metres (574 ft) beneath the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva, Switzerland. Its synchrotron is designed to collide opposing particle beams of either protons at up to 7 teraelectronvolts per nucleon, or lead nuclei at an energy of 574 TeV per nucleus.
  • On 10 September 2008, the proton beams were successfully circulated in the main ring of the LHC for the first time, but 9 days later operations were halted due to a magnet quench incident resulting from an electrical fault. The following helium gas explosion damaged over 50 superconducting magnets and their mountings, and contaminated the vacuum pipe.
  • On 20 November 2009 low energy beams were successfully circulated again, with the first recorded proton—proton collisions occurring 3 days later. Thus, on 30 November, the LHC achieved 1.18 TeV per beam to become the world’s highest-energy particle accelerator.                            LARGE HADRON COLLIDER
  • On 30 March 2010, the first collisions took place between two 3.5 TeV beams, setting the current world record for the highest-energy man-made particle collisions, and the LHC began its planned research program.                                                LARGE HADRON COLLIDER
  • The LHC will continue to operate at 3.5 TeV per beam , half of its planned capability, until the end of 2012. It will then be shut down for a year for upgrades to allow full energy operation (7 TeV per beam), with reopening planned for early 2015.

DETECTORS

  • Six detectors have been constructed at the LHC, located underground in large caverns excavated at the LHC’s intersection points.
  • Two of them, the ATLAS experiment and the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS), are large, general purpose particle detectors.
  • A Large Ion Collider Experiment (ALICE) and LHCb, have more specific roles and the last two, TOTEM and LHCf, are very much smaller and are for very specialized research.

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