As I speculated on Monday, the LHC at Cern has had to be shut down due to a large helium leak in sector 3-4 in the Large Hadron Collider tunnel.
Cern Director General Robert Aymer explained in a press release yesterday that the most likely cause of the leak was a faulty electrical connection between two of the accelerator’s magnets.
He added it would take three to four weeks to bring the sector to room tempreture and examine the magnets.
As the work precedes Cern winter maintenance programme, the LHC and the experuiment will now not resume until spring 2009.
To find out more on Cern and its relevance to the IT sector see our essential guide on the Cern laboratory and the big bang theory.
Also think I may have been first with the news of problems with the LHC (Monday pm) – certainly ahead of the press release yesterday.