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start:physics:cosmology:cosmic_rays

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Cosmic rays

“Cosmic rays are typically protons or atomic nuclei of elements such as helium, carbon, or iron. The most energetic have energies more than 10 million times greater than those in the world’s most powerful atom smasher, the Large Hadron Collider. Physicists aren't sure what astrophysical process could accelerate particles to such energies. Possible culprits include the lingering remains of supernovae, the explosions that occur when massive stars run out of fuel and die; and active galactic nuclei, superheated galaxies with supermassive black holes at their centers that spew out energy at prodigious rates.”

Source: Science, 2016

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