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Glyndŵr University research is set to contribute to the world’s most high-profile science project. A computing breakthrough involving one of the university’s PhD students could help with the search by scientists at CERN in Switzerland for definitive evidence of the existence of the Higgs boson.

Matthias Kreider is contributing to research into a new networking protocol, which could play a key role in major scientific breakthroughs at the giant laboratory. Matthias is based at the GSI Helmholtz Centre for Heavy Ion Research in Darmstadt, Germany, but is a Glyndŵr University student supervised by the university’s Professor Vic Grout and John Davies.

The centre in Darmstadt is building a new heavy ion accelerator similar in construction to the large hadron collider at CERN, although it is used for a different purpose. Research at Darmstadt includes the discovery of six new chemical elements and the development of a new cancer treatment.

Matthias is working on the electronics for a networking protocol which would allow the work of the accelerator to be timed and recorded to an extremely precise degree. This is crucial to its effectiveness for research. Vic said “The new protocol is now potentially going to be used both at Darmstadt and CERN. It is the same process at both sites, but the difference is the materials being accelerated.

“Both sites need to tackle the same problem, so they are working together.”

A paper co-authored by Matthias, Vic, John and researchers from CERN and Darmstadt has now been published by the American Physical Society.

Vic added “The paper is not the finished product just yet but the results are very good. Everything they have implemented so far has worked and is on schedule.

“Matthias is based at the centre in Germany but we have regular meetings via Skype. We travel to see him over there annually and he spends a few days a year here. We look forward to the continuing progress of the research, which is extremely promising.”