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CERN

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (French: Organisation européenne pour la recherche nucléaire), known as CERN; derived from the name Conseil européen pour la recherche nucléaire), is a European research organization that operates the largest particle physics laboratory in the world. Established in 1954, the organization is based in a northwest suburb of Geneva on the Franco–Swiss border and has 23 member states. Israel is the only non-European country granted full membership. CERN is an official United Nations Observer. The acronym CERN is also used to refer to the laboratory, which in 2016 had 2,500 scientific, technical, and administrative staff members, and hosted about 12,000 users. In the same year, CERN generated 49 petabytes of data. CERN's main function is to provide the particle accelerators and other infrastructure needed for high-energy physics research – as a result, numerous experiments have been constructed at CERN through international collaborations. The main site at Meyrin hosts a large computing facility, which is primarily used to store and analyse data from experiments, as well as simulate events. Researchers need remote access to these facilities, so the lab has historically been a major wide area network hub. CERN is also the birthplace of the World Wide Web.

From atomic to nuclear clocks

“Peter Thirolf, Benedict Seiferle and Lars von der Wense describe how recent progress in understanding thorium’s nuclear structure, and new upcoming results, could enable an ultra-accurate nuclear clock with applications in fundamental physics. For the past 60 years, the …

CERN tech in space: the first CERN-driven satellite has been successfully launched

“With the launch of the CELESTA satellite for radiation monitoring in space, CERN shows its expertise in the field of radiation effects on electronics CELESTA, the first CERN-driven satellite, successfully entered orbit during the maiden flight of Europe’s …

LHCb discovers three new exotic particles

“The collaboration has observed a new kind of “pentaquark” and the first-ever pair of “tetraquarks” The international LHCb collaboration at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) has observed three never-before-seen particles: a new kind of “pentaquark” and the first-ever pair of …

VELO’s voyage into the unknown

“The installation of LHCb’s all-new Vertex Locator is part of a major upgrade that will extend the experiment’s capabilities to search for physics beyond the Standard Model, describe Stefano de Capua, Wouter Hulsbergen and David Hutchcroft. The first …

Bismuth isotopes also alternate from spheres to rugby balls

“The unusual nuclear physics phenomenon, first discovered at CERN’s ISOLDE facility 50 years ago, had until now been seen only in mercury isotopes. Alternating from spheres to rugby balls is no longer the sole preserve of mercury isotopes, an …

BASE demonstrates two-trap cooling

“In a significant technological advance for antimatter research, the BASE (Baryon Antibaryon Symmetry Experiment) collaboration has used laser-cooled ions to cool a proton more quickly and to lower temperatures than is possible using existing methods. The new technique, which introduces …

CERN to provide second DUNE cryostat

“The Laboratory deepens its collaboration with the US-based neutrino experiment with the provision of two enormous stainless-steel vessels for DUNE’s cutting-edge liquid-argon detectors Neutrinos are tricky beasts. Alone among known fundamental particles, they suffer from an identity crisis …

Twice the charm: long-lived exotic particle discovered

“Discovery of a new exotic hadron containing two charm quarks and an up and a down antiquark. Today, the LHCb experiment at CERN is presenting a new discovery at the European Physical Society Conference on High Energy Physics (EPS-HEP …

Tracking the rise of pixel detectors

“From their beginnings at CERN half a century ago, writes Chris Damerell, silicon pixel detectors for particle tracking have blossomed into a vast array of beautiful creations that have driven numerous discoveries, with no signs of the advances slowing down …

Searching for the unknown

“Count all the known kinds of particles in the universe. Now double it. This is the promise of a family of theoretical models known as Supersymmetry, or SUSY for short. The notion of theories predicting a doubling of observed particles …