The LHC is the world's largest and highest-energy particle accelerator. The collider is contained in a circular tunnel, with a circumference of 27 kilometres (17 mi), at a depth ranging from 50 to 175 metres (164 to 574 ft) underground. The 3.8-metre (12 ft) wide concrete-lined tunnel, constructed between 1983 and 1988, was formerly used to house theLarge Electron–Positron Collider. It crosses the border between Switzerland and France at four points, with most of it in France. Surface buildings hold ancillary equipment such as compressors, ventilation equipment, control electronics and refrigeration plants.

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