CERN Increasing Energy Level of Large Hadron Collider
European Council for Nuclear Research (CERN), European physics laboratory, has reported to increase the energy level of Large Hadron Collider (LHC) – largest machine in the world used by scientists to study the smallest known particles – on Monday, February 13. LHC will run at 4 trillion electron-volts (TeV) this year. This level of energy is 0.5 TeV higher than CERN used in the years 2010 and 2011. CERN has explained 1 TeV as “about the energy of motion of a flying mosquito”.
“When we started operating the LHC for physics in 2010, we chose the lowest safe beam energy consistent with the physics we wanted to do,” said CERN’s Director for Accelerators and Technology, Steve Myers. “Two good years of operational experience with beam and many additional measurements made during 2011 give us the confidence to safely move up a notch, and thereby extend the physics reach of the experiments before we go into the LHC’s first long shutdown.”
CERN has taken this decision to get maximum possible information this year so that after these experiments LHC will remain silent for 20 months to get ready to run at 7 TeV.
Previously, scientists got 4-sigma level of confidence while researching the Higgs boson in the range of 124-126 GeV. This year researchers are very much hopeful about the results to get 5-sigma level of confidence, which will declare Higgs boson as officially discovered particles.
Sergio Bertolucci, CERN’s research director, said,
By the time the LHC goes into its first long stop at the end of this year, we will either know that a Higgs particle exists or have ruled out the existence of a Standard Model Higgs. Either would be a major advance in our exploration of nature, bringing us closer to understanding how the fundamental particles acquire their mass, and marking the beginning of a new chapter in particle physics.
Image: An expert is moving around LHC (Credit: CERN)