World’s Largest Particle Accelerator to Set New Energy Record

Now, the LHC will began smashing protons together at unprecedented energy levels in his quest to uncover more secrets about the workings of the universe.

The LHC resumed operations in April after a three-year break to improve its performance. Starting Tuesday (5/7/2022) the LHC will run around the clock for nearly four years at a record energy of 13.6 trillion electronvolts.

This force would send two beams of protons—particles in an atom’s nucleus—in opposite directions at the speed of almost light around a 27-kilometer ring buried 100 meters below the Swiss-French border.

The resulting collision will be recorded and analyzed by thousands of scientists as part of a series of experiments, including ATLAS, CMS, ALICE and LHCb. That enhanced power will be used to investigate dark matter, dark energy, and other fundamental mysteries.

1.6 billion collisions per second

“We aim to deliver 1.6 billion proton-proton collisions per second” for the ATLAS and CMS experiments, said CERN’s head of accelerator and technology, Mike Lamont.

This time the proton beam will be narrowed down to less than 10 microns to increase the collision rate. As an illustration, a human hair is about 70 microns thick.

The new energy level will allow them to further investigate the Higgs boson, which the LHC first observed on July 4, 2012. This discovery revolutionized physics in part because the boson fits into the Standard Model – the mainstream theory of all the fundamental particles that make up matter and the forces that govern them. .

“The Higgs boson is related to some of the most profound open questions in fundamental physics today,” said the director general CERN Fabiola Gianotti, who first announced the discovery of the boson a decade ago, reported from SciencealertTuesday (5/7/2022).

Compared to the first attempt to find bosons, this time there would be 20 times more collisions. “This is a significant improvement, paving the way for new discoveries,” Lamont said.

Joachim Mnich, CERN’s head of research and computing, said there was still much to learn about bosons.

“Is the Higgs boson really a fundamental particle or a composite?”

‘New Physics Season’

Previous experiments have determined the mass of the Higgs boson, as well as more than 60 composite particles predicted by the Standard Model, such as the tetraquark. However, Gian Giudice, head of CERN’s department of theoretical physics, says observing particles is only part of the job.

“Particle physics doesn’t just want to understand how—our goal is to understand why,” he said.

Among the LHC’s nine experiments are ALICE, which probes matter that existed within the first 10 microseconds after the Big Bang, and LHCF, which uses collisions to simulate cosmic rays.

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