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  • Who: Large Hadron Collider

  • What: Most powerful particle accelerator

  • Where: Switzerland

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is an international project to study matter by emulating conditions just a few billionths of a second after the Big Bang. It is located in the 27 km-long (16.7 km) circular tunnel at the CERN laboratory, Geneva, Switzerland, that previously housed the Large Electron Positron Collider. The 38,000-tonne (83,775,560-lb) collider will accelerate two beams of matter in opposite directions around the tunnel. Once travelling at nearly the speed of light the two streams of particles will be allowed to collide, producing showers of exotic subatomic particles, which will be detected by instruments in the tunnel. The LHC is due for completion in November 2007 and will require 120 MW of power and 91 tonnes (200,620 lb) of liquid helium to operate. One principle aim of the LHC is to find the theorized but as yet unseen Higgs Boson particle – often nicknamed the God Particle.

 

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