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LHC Back Online, With an Extra Shot

The upgraded particle collider gets supercharged.

By Andy Berger|Monday, November 30, 2015
LHC-online
LHC-online
The Compact Muon Solenoid is one of four major detectors at the upgraded Large Hadron Collider, which was reactivated in June.
Richard Juilliart/AFP/Getty Images

After a two-year shutdown for upgrades and maintenance, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) — already the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator — is back online and more powerful than ever. The LHC’s particles, which whiz around a 17-mile loop at almost light speed, will now boast nearly twice the collision energy. While the 2012 discovery of the Higgs boson particle was a landmark event, it was basically expected. Physicists hope that with bigger energies come bigger findings: brand-new particles, evidence for theories beyond the Standard Model (the current paradigm) or even the discovery of dark matter’s identity. Hold on to your protons.

LHC-technicians
LHC-technicians
Technicians at the Large Hadron Collider conduct radiography tests of the connection between an LHC magnet and its diode in March.
Maximilien Brice/CERN
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