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Over at the Large Hadron Collider, protons simultaneously circle clockwise and counterclockwise, smashing into one another while moving at 99.9999991% the speed of light apiece. At two specific points designed to have the greatest numbers of collisions, enormous particle detectors were constructed and installed: the CMS and ATLAS detectors. After billions upon billions of collisions at these enormous energies, the LHC has brought us further in our hunt for the fundamental nature of the Universe and our understanding of the elementary building blocks of matter.

Earlier this month, the LHC celebrated 10 years of operation, with the discovery of the Higgs boson marking its crowning achievement. Yet despite these successes, no new particles, interactions, decays, or fundamental physics has been found. Worst of all is this: most of CERN's data from the LHC has been lost forever.

This is one of the least well-understood pieces of the high-energy physics puzzle, at least among the general public. The LHC hasn't just lost most of its data: it's lost a whopping 99.9999% of it. That's right; out of every one million collisions that occurs at the LHC, only one of them has all of its data written down and recorded.

To read more, click here.

Category: Science