Large Hadron Collider set to restart

Graph showing that, as of today, all LHC magnets have completed their training to reach the target currents for beams at 6.5 TeV. The coloured symbols represent each of the LHC's 8 sectors; x axis is time in days (Image: CERN)

After a shutdown lasting two years, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world’s biggest and most powerful particle accelerator, is ready once again for the arrival of particle beams. The teams are completing the final tests after having solved on 31 March the problem that had been delaying the restart of the accelerator. The first beams could be circulating in the machine sometime between Saturday and Monday.

“We are confident of being able to restart the machine over the weekend, as all of the tests performed so far have been successful,” said Frédérick Bordry, Director for Accelerators and Technology at CERN.

When the LHC and the whole accelerator chain are running, operators work in shifts around the clock in the control room. They will attempt to circulate beams in the LHC in both directions, at their injection energy of 450 GeV, as soon as all the lights are green.

Particle collisions at an energy of 13 TeV could start as early as June.