Sub sinks large Hadron Collider

Posted by Emma Woollacott

The accident-prone Large Hadron Collider (LHC) has ground to a halt again - this time thanks to a sandwich.

Scientists at the CERN particle physics laboratory in Geneva realized that temperatures were rising, and that something was up with one of the LHC's cryogenic cooling units.

The failure meant that the temperature of the affected cooler rose by five degrees to a positively tropical -266C.

BaguetteBut a little poking around with a screwdriver revealed that the cooling unit's power supply contained one element that was surplus to requirements - a piece of baguette.

CERN has ruled out the existence of an employee with messy eating habits, or of some poorly-armed protestor - the massive site is protected by high security fences.

“Nobody knows how it got there,” a spokeswoman told The Times newspaper. “The best guess is that it was dropped by a bird - either that or it was thrown out of a passing aeroplane.”

CERN reckons it will have the cooler back on track in the next couple of days.