Category | Steel

ArcelorMittal’s steel helps in the ‘Higgs boson’ subatomic particle discovery

Earlier this week, a group of leading scientists announced they had made a breakthrough discovery in understanding the origins of the universe.

Scientists at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) centre in Switzerland said on 4 July that they believed they have found the ‘Higgs boson’ subatomic particle, sometimes called the ‘God particle’, that confirms our understanding of how the universe works.

The breakthrough, which rivals the discovery of DNA in 1953, would not have been possible without ArcelorMittal Flat Carbon Europe’s specialist steel that was used to build the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) – the particle accelerator that fires trillions of protons around a 27km tunnel at 99.99% of the speed of light.

For the construction of the LHC which began in 1998, CERN issued a call for tenders to 25 suppliers for the manufacture of 50,000 tonnes of magnets with strictly identical properties. The manufacturing specifications (chemical composition, rolling temperatures, quality of upper surface) had to be guaranteed to rule out any deviation of the high speed proton beam movement. Thanks to close collaboration between ArcelorMittal’s research and development (R&D), technology and commercial teams, our company won the contract by offering a new, high thickness magnetic steel (pictured, below) guaranteeing a weak coercive field.

CERN is one of the world’s largest and most highly respected scientific research centres. Its mission is to research nuclear and particle physics, and to understand how our universe was created, how matter is formed and what holds it together.

ArcelorMittal has been a partner to CERN for more than 50 years, and was a sponsor of the official LHC inauguration in 2008 at which global head of R&D Greg Ludkovsky was a guest.