And recently, two different experiments reported that they may have discovered a particle that behaves in ways that cannot be explained with any existing physical laws, as Scientific American reports.
Shown below is one of four major detectors that are crucial to the machine's purpose:
The Large Hadron Collider slams beams of subatomic particles — traveling at more than 99.999999% the speed of light — together in the most energetic head-on hits you can imagine.
The heaping piles of scientific data generated from these powerful mashups, and seen by giant detectors like the one above, is enough to fill 100,000 dual-layer, single-sided DVDs each year. And this data is fueling countless science projects across the globe conducted by more than 10,000 researchers, engineers, and students.
These projects probe and test the fundamental laws of physics that govern our understanding of the universe.
And given the latest discoveries, could it be that with its tremendous power and mind-boggling technology the LHC has broken the laws of physics and given us material with which to expand on new theories? The results still need to be confirmed first, though.
In the meantime, here's an amazing graphic by the producers at Column Five — an agency that specializes in informative graphics — about the LHC, what it does, how it operates, and what physicists are hunting inside of its giant, empty, and freezing tunnels:
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