Scientists to hold launch party for "Big Bang machine"

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Rome, Oct 22 : Europe's top scientists are holding a party to inaugurate the Large Hadron Collider despite the multi-billion dollar machine being out of order.

The giant experiment called the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) took nearly 20 years to complete and cost 4.4 billion pounds to build in a tunnel complex under the Franco-Swiss border.

According to a report in the Telegraph, the president of Switzerland and the prime minister of France will lead the celebrations to officially launch the project dubbed the biggest experiment in history.

The ceremony will finish with a special "molecular buffet" concocted by famed Spanish chef Ferran Adria, of El Bulli and Ettore Bocchia.

The chefs are famed for their molecular gastronomy cuisine, which involves using different textures, temperatures and combinations as well as unusual cooking techniques.

The ceremony will also feature exhibitions, an audiovisual concert and the music of Philip Glass, said a statement by the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN).

But, it will be a far cry from the jubilation and media fanfare that greeted the launch of the experiment on September 10, which made newspaper front pages the world over.

Scientists said a faulty electrical connection between magnets was likely to blame for a large helium leak which caused the LHC to be shut down later in September.

"The time necessary for the investigation and repairs precludes a restart before CERN's obligatory winter maintenance period, bringing the date for restart of the accelerator complex to early spring 2009," CERN said at the time in a statement.

The LHC is a 27-kilometre (16.9-mile) circular tunnel in which parallel beams of protons accelerate close to the speed of light.

It aims to resolve some of the greatest questions surrounding fundamental matter, such as how particles acquire mass and how they were forged some 13.7 billion years ago.

ANI

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