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World Briefing / SWITZERLAND

Malfunction halts particle collider

September 21, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

The world's largest atom smasher, which was launched with great fanfare this month, has been damaged twice and will be out of commission for at least two months, its operators said.

The European Organization for Nuclear Research said that a large amount of helium had leaked into the 17-mile circular tunnel that houses the Large Hadron Collider deep under the Swiss-French border.

The massive collider had to be shut down only 36 hours after it began operating. A second failure took place midday Friday.

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