Public chooses 'Halo' as name for 'Big Bang machine'

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London, September 18 : A public poll organized by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) in London has chosen the name 'Halo' for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), which is located along the Franco-Swiss border.

According to a report in the Telegraph, the public has decided that the LHC should have the catchier name - 'Halo'.

The Large Hadron Collider does what its name says, since hadron refers to the subatomic particles that the giant machine smashes together at a shade below the speed of light.

"But, this fails to reflect the drama of its mission, or the inspiration it should be conveying to the wider public," said Dr Richard Pike, chief executive of the Society.

The Society launched a competition to suggest an inspiring name for the 17 mile circumference machine, which is going to smash its first particles next week at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research in Geneva, known by its French acronym CERN.

After sifting more than 2,500 responses, ranging from 'The Big Banger' to 'Infinite Devil Machine' and 'The Matter Splatterer', it has now selected a winner to rechristen the vast enterprise.

According to the RSC, after it was fed up with the contrived acronyms that plague the world of science, it picked a suggestion that is simple, memorable, and brings to mind the deserved grandeur of perhaps the most important experiment ever built.

"Halo conjures visions of radiant beauty, power and wisdom. The circle of light reflects the collider's form; it is a crowning achievement of science and engineering. It also gives more than a nod to the experiment's importance to religious debate," said officials from the RSC.

The name 'Halo' was by far the most popular entry. The winner was chosen at random from the hundreds of people who suggested it.

The Society will be formally suggesting the new name to CERN and the Institute of Physics.

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