Virginia lab to compete for bid to build atomic collider

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) — The Nuclear Science Advisory Committee in Washington has recommended the construction of an atomic collider, and now the Virginia’s Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility in Newport News will compete with New York’s Brookhaven Laboratory in Long Island to build it.

Virginia media outlets report that the committee announced their recommendation Thursday.

A study says the collider would take 10 year to build, could contribute $708 million to the state economy and create nearly 5,000 construction jobs.

The collider would smash electrons into heavy ions or protons at nearly the speed of light, giving scientists the opportunity to learn more about the force that binds all visible matter.

Officials say it could be a year or two before a decision to build is made, and two to three years before a site is chosen for the project.

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