A Short Circuit Keeps the  LHC from  Smashing Protons on Time

The operation was postponed on the Large Hadron Collider as it was announced that a short circuit was found in one of its powerful electromagnets. Thus it could mean a delay for days or weeks before it could continue to achieve its task.

For over two years the LHC had been once again prepared to smash protons together with a new and much higher energies.  Proton beams are supposed to travel safely around its 27km circumference in both directions before the collisions should start. The full course were supposed to begin this week yet it has to be reconsidered.

The “intermittent short circuit “was discovered on Saturday, said CERN the European nuclear research organization which runs the LHC.

A magnet which is responsible to eventually send protons racing around the LHC is said to have been affected particularly the magnet in “sector 3-4”.

The neighboring sector 4-5 of the machine ,which had caused a failure to start when the LHC first initiated operations in 2008 , had been falling back the other seven in the progressive “training” process that the magnets must undergo .

Yet the short circuit is still crucial that it is forced to slow down operations for restart.

The repair is said to take longer since the magnets are supercooled to temperatures nearing to absolute zero (-273C), CERN said it was “a well understood issue”. The delay may take time that it could reach a few days or even weeks if the faulty magnet needs to be warmed up and re-cooled. The organization had made their statement about the matter on Tuesday.

“Any cryogenic machine is a time amplifier, so what would have taken hours in a warm machine could end up taking us weeks,” said CREN’s director for accelerators, Frederick Bordry. The scientists at CERN had stressed that the restart schedule can always be adjusted and that the Run Two of the world’s largest machine is what they still aim to achieve.

“All the signs are good for a great Run Two. In the grand scheme of things, a few weeks’ delay in humankind’s quest to understand our Universe is little more than the blink of an eye.” Said Rolf Heuer, the organization’s director general.




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