I heard a two part show on NPR yesterday about a new $8 billion particle accelerator that will go into operation this November at CERN. I love this kind of thing--always have. When I was a kid, I grew up next to the National Reactor Testing Station (now the INEEL) in Idaho. There are over 60 nuclear reactors there (only a few are still operational). Names like the Experimental Breeder Reactor were common in my childhood and I just grew up being fascinated by all of it.
The new accelerator is simply amazing. Of course, the US doesn't do this sort of thing anymore. That makes me sad. David Kestenbaum does a great job with the story.