Even though some apprehension led up to the device’s launch, the Large Hadron Collider was switched on today and it successfully fired protons around a 17-mile tunnel. Physicists celebrated all over the world as the “white blips” flashed across the control screens, indicating the protons had successfully completed their journey.
The LHC has been in planning stages since 1984 and cost $10 billion to make. But now with the first test out of the way, the scientists hope to discover brand new things about our planet and the universe.
The first real experiments will begin in a few weeks, where significant collisions are expected between protons. The protons will be fired at speeds nearing the speed of light in opposite directions around the tunnel and then magnets will be used to smash them into each other. Huge detectors will capture all of the happenings for study. These experiments could uncover dark matter, antimatter or even the Higgs-Boson particle, which is sometimes referred to as “God’s particle” because it is believed to be apart of all other particles by giving mass to them.
[via Yahoo! News]