Large Hadron Collider reaches highest energy level
The world's largest particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), has ramped up particles to higher energies than ever before, scientists announced on Thursday.
The LHC is 27 km long underground ring near Geneva, Switzerland, where protons are sped up to near the speed of light and then slammed into each other.
The faster the particles go, the more energy they have. Recently, LHC achieved energies of 4 teraelectron volts (TeV).
Ultimately the machine, the most powerful of its kind, is designed to accelerate particles to 8 TeV, though to reach those energies, scientists are planning to shut down LHC for a refurbishment in late 2012.