Particle accelerators

Blog about particle accelerators

13.6 TeV collisions detected by the LHC ATLAS experiment (Image courtesy ATLAS Collaboration/CERN)

CERN announced that yesterday, when it was afternoon in Switzerland, the detectors of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) began detecting collisions between particles at an energy that reached 13.6 TeV (Tera-electronVolts). These are energy levels never reached before, which mark the beginning of Run 3, the third LHC research campaign.

At the end of April, after the Long Shutdown 2, the period of more than three years in which the LHC equipment was updated, the slow restart of the largest particle accelerator in the world began. The detectors and other systems of the LHC experiments were updated as well to increase the quantity and quality of data that will be collected in the new research campaign.

A section of the LHC tunnel (Photo courtesy CERN)

The LHC (Large Hadron Collider), the largest particle accelerator in the world, has resumed work in preparation for the new work program, code-named Run 3, which is scheduled to start in July. The initial operations are the ones necessary to test the equipment after more than three years of update work. On April 22, the first proton beams were injected in opposite directions into the 27-kilometer the LHC ring. If all goes as planned, Run 3 will begin in July pending the completion of other works that will lead to the enhanced version called High Luminosity the LHC (HiLumi LHC or simply HL-LHC).

Crab cavities during the test (Photo courtesy M. Brice/CERN)

A ceremony held at CERN with the laying of the first stone marked the beginning of the works for the High Luminosity LHC – HiLumi LHC or simply HL-LHC – the project to strengthen LHC (Large Hadron Collider), the largest particle accelerator in the world. By 2026, the performance of the LHC will be greatly enhanced allowing to increase the number of collisions in the large experiments to be able to investigate even further the limits of physics phenomena.

ALPHA experiment facility (Photo courtesy Maximilien Brice/CERN)

An article published in the journal “Nature” describes the measurement of a spectral line of an antihydrogen atom. The ALPHA experiment at CERN, which is specifically intended to conduct experiments on anti-hydrogen to better understand antimatter’s characteristics, managed to trap an anti-atom to examine it with a laser and to establish that its spectral characteristics are identical to those of hydrogen.

Scheme of the AWAKE experiment within CERN's structure (Image courtesy CERN)

At the end of last week at CERN the first particle beam was sent through the AWAKE experiment, a test of a proof-of-concept of a new type of particle accelerator. It’s currently still under construction but when finished it will prove the possibility to build plasma accelerators in which wakefield acceleration allows to build accelerators a hundred times smaller than the current ones.