Science & Technology

The latest in science and technology.

In Switzerland, accelerator begins smashing protons at full speed

At 12:58 p.m. local time last Tuesday, the Large Hadron Collider, a mammoth particle accelerator buried 100 metres beneath Geneva, Switzerland, finally began smashing subatomic particles together at record-high speeds. Though the LHC’s first successful particle collisions occurred in November, on Tuesday physicists at the accelerator recorded the first collisions at the energy level – about seven trillion electron volts (TeV) – at which the collider will operate for about the next year and a half.

Up To Speed

The US National Cancer Institute team has found a way to manipulate immune cells in one’s own body to attack certain kinds of cancer. Two of 17 people treated have been declared clear of skin cancer after treatment using genetically modified versions of their own immune cells.

Something in the Air

In this age of greenhouse gasses and smog advisories, air pollution has gotten a pretty bad name, and rightly so. But it still looks pretty trippy. Air pollution is divided into four categories: criteria air contaminates (which create smog and acid rain), persistent organic pollutants (which travel well and bioaccumulate in body tissues), heavy metals (which enter the food and water supply) and toxins (which will, in one way or another, kill you).