JEAN COLLOMBET / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JEAN COLLOMBET / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Super-Proton-Synchrotron accelerator. Technicians work on the RF (radio-frequency) cavities of the Super- Proton-Synchrotron (SPS) accelerator at CERN, the European particle physics laboratory outside Geneva, in 1983. Here the underground tunnel containing the beam pipe through which protons and antiprotons travel in opposite directions around the SPS ring. The pipe itself cannot be seen as it passes through the RF cavities where the particles are accelerated by electric fields generated by radio waves. The protons and antiprotons are accelerated to almost the speed of light as they circle the ring before being smashed into each other inside detectors.
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