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Big Bang machine smashes particles

A team of scientists in Switzerland have collided sub-atomic particles at record power, in an attempt to mimic conditions of the Big Bang that created the universe 13.7 billion years ago.

"This is a major breakthrough. We are going where nobody has been before. We have opened a new territory for physics," Oliver Buchmueller at the the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (Cern), said.

The experiment in Cern's 27km long Large Hadron Collider (Lhc) will allow researchers to examine the nature of fundamental matter and the origins of stars and planets. The collisions took place at a record total collision energy of 7 billion electron volt, just a fraction of a second slower than the speed of light.

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