Multiply the core temperature of the sun by a million! That was the heat generated by the Large Hadron Collider in creating its �mini Big Bang�.

The experiment on 7 November was conducted under the border of France and Switzerland, outside Geneva, in a circular tunnel measuring 27 km. The new test blasted lead ions together instead of protons which had previously been used in a search for the Higgs boson particle.

The European Organisation for Nuclear Research, which operates the LHC, will for the next month use collisions of lead ions for data analysis. Their goal is to extend knowledge of the universe�s plasma construction just a millionth of a second following the Big Bang dating back 13.7 billion years.

ALICE is an experiment specially conceived to blast lead ions together. Compact Muon Solenoid and ATLAS experiments have been adapted to follow suit.

The University of Birmingham�s Dr David Evans, said that ALICE had produced record densities and generated temperatures in excess of ten trillion degrees in sub-atomic fireballs. In such extreme heat protons and neutrons melt to form a quark-gluon plasma, which scientists believe existed right after the Big Bang.

Dr Evans added that a study of this plasma may shed light on the force that bonds together the nuclei of atoms.