The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN smashes protons together at close to the speed of light with seven times the energy of the most powerful accelerators built up to now.
Some of the collision energy is turned into mass, creating new particles which are observed in the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) particle detector. CMS data is analyzed by scientists around the world to build up a picture of what happened at the heart of the collision.
This will help us answer questions such as: "what is the Universe really made of and what forces act within it?" and "what gives everything substance?"
Such research increases our basic understanding and may also spark new technologies that change the world we live in.
2011-08-04, by Lucas Taylor