Feeds

Large Hadron Collider briefly back on over weekend

Halting start to 2010 proton billiards season

Intelligent flash storage arrays

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC), mightiest particle-masher ever assembled by the human race, briefly circulated its first hadron beams of 2010 at the weekend. However the vast machine has now been shut down again to remedy further technical snags.

Following last week's unfortunate multi-magnet quench incident, which saw large sections of the LHC's 27km forcefield conduit blink offline just as boffins were about to start powering particles around it, a new redline was painted on the dials in the control room. It had been hoped that beams would fire up on Friday, but in the event there was no success until the early hours of Sunday morning.

Even as the world's media noted that beams were back up, however, a "cryo intervention" was declared and beaming ceased. As this report is written, the LHC's subterranean tunnel circuit is cleared for people to enter (nobody is allowed down there when beams are up - access doors have retina-scan locks, and "it has to be a live eyeball", according to our control-room sources).

The latest estimates say that the rectification and recovery to supercold operating temperatures is expected to take until 5 or 6 o'clock this evening Swiss time.

It looks as though it may be a while before the Collider team can get the insanely complex machine back up to the record-breaking collision intensities seen late last year - and then onward to the planned 7 Tera-electron-Volt matter-mangling expected later this year. The LHC was designed to be capable of firing two even more outrageous 7 TeV beams into each other for an ultimate collision energy of 14 TeV, but following previous superfluid explosion disasters engineers now consider that a major refit will be required before such power levels are safe. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
'Utter killjoy Reg hacks have NEVER BEEN LAID', writes a fan
'Shuddit, smarty pants!' Some readers reacted badly to our last Doctor Who review ...
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
White LED lies: It's great, but Nobel physics prize-winning great?
How artificial lighting could offer an artificial promise
Origins of SEXUAL INTERCOURSE fished out of SCOTTISH LAKE
Fossil find proves it first happened 385 million years ago
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.