The rate of particle collisions in the world's largest particle accelerator has multiplied 10-fold in the space of a month.
The world's biggest particle collider set a new record early Monday, a feat that should accelerate the quest to pinpoint the elusive particle known as the Higgs Boson, a senior physicist said.
"Last night, a symbolic frontier was crossed," said Michel Spiro, president of the board of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), explaining that the rate of sub-atomic smashups in its vast machine had multiplied 10-fold in the space of a month.
CERN's Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is housed in a 27-kilometer (16.9-mile) ring-shaped tunnel 100 meters (325 feet) below ground, straddling the French-Swiss border.
It is designed to accelerate beams of protons to nearly the speed of light in contra-rotating directions.
Then, using magnets, the beams are then directed into labs where some of the protons collide while others escape.
Detectors record the seething sub-atomic debris, hoping to find traces of particles that can strengthen fundamental understanding of physics.