World's Largest Atom Smasher Wakes Up After Two Years

What physicists can learn from the Large Hadron Collider.

— -- The world's most powerful atom smasher that has provided insight into the beginnings of the universe is ready to get back to work.

"After two years of effort, the LHC is in great shape," CERN Director Frédérick Bordry said in a statement. "But the most important step is still to come when we increase the energy of the beams to new record levels."

Located in Geneva, Switzerland, the complex machine came back to life on Sunday as a proton beam zipped through the nearly 17-mile-long ring deep underground. A second beam circulated in the opposite direction, according to CERN.