CERN collider makes first top quark

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The CERN particle super-collider near Geneva has made a top quark, the first time anyone in Europe has done so.

Top quarks are the heaviest quarks, which appear after protons crash into each other, as happens in the super-collider. As the number of collisions increases, so does the number of quarks, says Dutch CERN scientist Paul de Jong in an interview with Radio Netherlands Worldwide.

The scientist says the breakthrough is important because it could help other research, for example on the Higgs particle, which gives all other elementary particles mass, or research on black matter.

Mr De Jong expects that in three weeks' time the super-collider will produce more top quarks than those ever made in the United States. Since 30 March, the super collider straddling the border between France and Switzerland has been working at full tilt. Scientists are using the huge machine to try and recreate conditions as they existed right after the Big Bang.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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