Amec Foster Wheeler has received contracts from CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, to undertake radiochemical testing.

Commenced earlier this year, the work includes characterization of waste components taken from high energy accelerators including the large hadron collider (LHC).

The LHC, which is said to be the world’s largest particle accelerator, features 17-mile ring of superconducting magnets capable of steering proton beams travelling almost similar to the speed of light.

Amec Foster Wheeler’s Clean Energy business consultancy director Greg Willetts said: "CERN is one of the world’s most prestigious science projects and sets very high standards for its suppliers.

"We have received excellent feedback about the quality of our work and have exceeded CERN’s expectations by delivering fully accredited results within five weeks on average, rather than the three months specified in the contracts.

"We aim to build on this developing relationship with CERN and offer a wider range of Amec Foster Wheeler services."

The work is expected to complement Amec Foster’s plan to support ‘Big Science’ projects with engineering, project management and scientific consultancy and the support to International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), an experimental nuclear fusion reactor in southern France.

The ITER, which is said to be the world’s largest nuclear fusion project, is a complex engineering project and is jointly funded by the US, China, Europe, Russian Federation, India, Japan and Republic of Korea.

Physicists and engineers used the LHC to determine the existence of the Higgs boson and discover a new type of particles, called pentaquarks.

Radiochemical testing ensures safe disposal of the protons in the safest and cost-effective manner when away from the beam.

When shifted shift away from the beam, the proton usually generates a low level of induced activity in materials while colliding with magnets or machine componentsAmec Foster Wheeler’s laboratories are planned to receive the samples from CERN’s headquarters near Geneva for analysis.