Atom smasher takes a break

GENEVA - December 18, 2009

The European Organization for Nuclear Research said Friday the break is necessary to increase the levels of the energy used to smash protons into each other.

The new collisions are expected to shatter the subatomic particles into even smaller fragments that could reveal secrets of matter and the universe.

Among the goals are studying suspected phenomena such as dark matter, antimatter and ultimately what happened in the first split seconds after the creation of the universe.

Many scientists theorize the universe occurred as a massive explosion known as the Big Bang 14 billion years ago.

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