Scientists at the European Council for Nuclear Research or CERN restarted the Large Hadron Collider on Friday, more than three years after the world’s most powerful particle accelerator was paused for maintenance and upgrades.
Rhodri Jones, head of CERN’s Beams department said, “These beams circulated at injection energy and contained a relatively small number of protons. High-intensity, high-energy collisions are a couple of months away. But first beams represent the successful restart of the accelerator after all the hard work of the long shutdown.”
The third run of the 16-mile-long collider, which was launched in 2008, is expected to produce collisions at record energy of 13.6 trillion electronvolts and in record numbers, thanks to extensive upgrades. This will allow physicists from around the world to study the Higgs boson in detail.
The Higgs boson, also known as the “God Particle”, is a subatomic particle that was discovered at the Large Hadron Collider in 2012 that scientists believe may be a fundamental building block of the universe.
The scientists are expecting to test the standard model of particle physics and improve understanding of cosmic-ray physics and a state of matter known as quark-gluon plasma that existed at the time of the Big Bang.