Large Hadron Collider user manual online

If you’ve got a few hours (or weeks) of spare time, you could learn how to run the Large Hadron Collider, located at CERN in Switzerland. CERN published the full technical details of the collider and detectors online, and anyone with some curiosity and patience can read all 1,589 pages. Tell us if you got through all of it, and if you’re planning to make your own particle accelerator.

[via MetaFilter]


  1. Joe Hall says:

    When you think about it 1,589 pages, is relatively small considering what the manual is trying to explain. But, then again its probably 1,588 longer then I could take!

  2. … I’m waiting for the cliff notes.

  3. sly says:

    and you’ll probably need a phd in particle physics to even grasp many of the concepts laid out in that manual.

  4. {VOID} says:

    Can’t they just make a movie from the book?

  5. aquatsr says:

    phd in electrical engineering as well.

  6. will d. says:

    read the lhc machine pdf! the beginning of the document gives a very straightforward summary of the whole machine and its history.

  7. Mr Dan says:

    I’ll just wait for ‘LHC for Dummies’

  8. blizzarddemon says:

    This manual is for all the people that respond to this post with the words “Not a hack” Try that on for size!

  9. ejfried says:

    Which chapter covers creating a black hole to eat the Earth?

  10. JB says:

    I’ll get around to reading it after I’m done assembling the hull of my starship. I’ll build the collider in the science deck :P

  11. Kayne001 says:

    I’ll get right on it!
    Operation Impending Dooooom!

  12. carl669 says:

    i made one. it annihilated my car keys. damn you cern!

  13. TheDoctor says:

    These are *NOT* “User Manuals” !!! What they happen to be are details of various component subsystems of the LHC. A “User Manual” would imply descriptive text and/or diagrams of how to OPERATE the LHC.

    This is similar to reading the system descriptions on an F-18C Hornet strike fighter. We have an APU that provides bleed air to spool up the turbines, blah, blah, blah.

    A “user manual” (in the case of an F-18, an AFM), would say, you select DC Power On, Energize DC Bus, Start APU, activate
    fuel valve ON, hit engine start, at 35%
    N1, move throttle to Idle detent, etc…

    No where do I see in the published LHC
    docs anything remotely resembling instructions on how to power up circuit breakers, enable particular systems, etc.


  14. albert heaton says:

    These scientists have now formed a tyranny against mankind. They screw up the planet then hold us to ransom with the threat of mass destruction and oblivion. I wish I could get my hands on one of these scientist freaks. I’d treat them the same way as someone who would kidnap or point a gun at one of my children!

  15. DADDY COOL says:


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