Large Hadron Collider Is Getting A Major Upgrade

Posted: Jun 16 2018, 7:34am CDT | by , Updated: Jun 16 2018, 7:48am CDT, in News | Latest Science News

 
Large Hadron Collider is Getting a Major Upgrade
Credit: CERN

The upgrade, scheduled to be completed by 2026, aims to increase the number of particle collisions inside the Large Hadron Collider

An effort to upgrade world’s largest and most powerful particle smasher has begun. On Friday, a ground-breaking ceremony at CERN marked the start of civil engineering work for the Large Hadron Collider. By 2026, this major upgrade will increase the number of collisions inside the facility and allow researchers to explore fundamental building blocks of matter in more detail than ever before.

“The very intense collisions between protons at the High-Luminosity LHC will allow scientists, including our team from the University of Edinburgh, to look at physics at the smallest accessible distances. This will provide a deeper understanding of what the fundamental constituents of the Universe are, how they behave, and how they build the structure of the Universe around us.” Professor Victoria Martin from University of Edinburgh said.

The Large Hadron Collider, which began operating in 2010, is placed inside a 27-kilometer ring-shaped tunnel buried more than 100 meters beneath the border of Switzerland and France. The powerful accelerator smashes high-energy protons into each other as they travel at almost the speed of light. These collisions generate new particles and sharpens our view of the laws of nature. Currently, LHC is able to generate nearly a billion collisions per second but the upgrade will considerably increase this number, referred as "luminosity” and will allow about 10 times more data to be accumulated between 2026 and 2036.

The upgrade will also help further explore Higgs boson particle, which was predicted by Professor Peter Higgs in the 1960s. In 2012, Large Hadron Collider proved the existence of this elementary particle. Experiments at the upgraded LHC could be used to define Higgs boson’s properties more accurately. They can also reveal how this practice is produced and how it interacts with other particles.

CERN Director-General Fabiola Gianotti says. "The High-Luminosity LHC will extend the LHC's reach beyond its initial mission, bringing new opportunities for discovery, measuring the properties of such as the Higgs Boson with greater precision, and exploring the fundamental constituents of the universe even more profoundly.”

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