On the Monday of last week I got the privilege of being able to visit the cern hydron collider near Geneva which is in Switzerland.
Cern is a research organization on nuclear particles it has 22 country’s part of the programme that all come together to help fund as well as discover the unknown of the universe. The most well know project going ahead is with the particle accelerators in the large hadron collider which speeds up protons to almost the speed of light before making them collide with sometimes head on collisions. These collisions are then monitored in four detectors Atlas, CMS, Alice and LHcb. It is this process that the Higgs was first discovered in 2012 by Peter Higgs. This later earned him the Nobel prize for physics. This helped secientists to understand the origins of subatomic particles as well as what has happened in the the Big Bang. This breakthough has proven to be a great start in understanding the universe. It is still thought however that over 95% of the universe is still unknown in understanding as well as the make up. This is why the system is still being used and is being maintained as well as improved.
On the trip I was able to go 100 meters underground as got to see the CMS dector which consists of 15 segments that have all been brought down individually by a crane and then assembled once down there. It is 15 meters in diameter and weighs as much as 30 jumbo jets. This is to enable the detector to be able to withstand the high energies involved as well as to maintain accuracy of readings. Even so the detector needs to have maintence done as well as improvem with each layer of the device detecting a different type of particle. When I was there they were repairing the inner layer that takes the most of the beating from the collisions as well as installing even better detection devices. The components of the detector came from various countries including Germany and Italy. It is very much a joint effort with scientists from many differnt natonalitiyies and languages working together to discover the universe. The CMS has very strong magnets around it creating a magnetic field of 4 Tesla which bends the particles to make sure they stay on the right course. The system uses superconductors that need to be kept at minus 271 degrees celcisus this is achieved by using liquid helium. The CMS detector along with all of the hydron collider will be back in action in 6-8 weeks.
Overall I am very privileged to have been able to see such science, I am really looking forward to see what else will be discovered as well as the understanding of the universe which is sure to be uncovered in the coming years due to cern. I enjoyed my trip away and now know more about the collider as well as the potential that it has for the future.
Thanks for reading if you have any questions please leave them below or any comments. Hope u enjoyed the read.
P.S I do have a few pictures but last time I tried to put them on the post I lost all my text and had to start again, if interested then habe a look at my Twitter page which is in the header.