First protons fired at largest particle collider
GENEVA: Scientists have fired the first protons into a 27-kilometer (17-mile) tunnel at the world's largest particle collider in science's next great step to understand the makeup of the universe.
Project leader Lyn Evans gave the order to send the protons into the US$3.8 billion Large Hadron Collider below the Swiss-French border early Wednesday.
Scientists hope it will provide the necessary power to smash the components of atoms so that they can see how they are made.
The startup has been eagerly awaited by 9,000 physicists around the world who will conduct experiments here.
Some skeptics have said they fear the collisions of protons could eventually imperil Earth.
See: Largest particle collider conducts successful test