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Fast Facts & Curiosities

FAST FACTS
PROTON VELOCITY:
99.9999991% of light speed

PROTONS PER BUNCH:
up to 100 billion

NUMBER OF BUNCHES:
up to 2,808

BUNCH CROSSINGS PER SECOND:
up to 31 million, at 4 locations

COLLISIONS PER BUNCH CROSSING:
up to 20

DATA PER COLLISION:
about 1.5 megabytes

NUMBER OF HIGGS PARTICLES:
1 every 2.5 seconds (at full beam luminosity and under certain assumptions about the Higgs)

CURIOSITIES
TILT!
The LHC’s tunnel is tilted 1.4 percent from horizontal, to put as much of it as possible inside solid rock. It is about 50 meters deep on the Lake Geneva side and 175 meters deep on the other.

PHASES OF THE MOON
When the moon is full, at
“high tide” the land near Geneva rises 25 centimeters, the LHC’s circumference increases by 1 millimeter, and the beam energy changes by 0.02 percent. The experimenters must allow for this effect: they must know the beam energy to within 0.002 percent accuracy.

THE OCTAGON
The LHC tunnel is actually octagonal, with eight arcs connected by eight short, straight sections that harbor the four experiments and facilities related to controlling the beam.

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