updated 5/8/2009 12:23:09 PM ET 2009-05-08T16:23:09

Austria says it is pulling out of an organization that operates the world's largest atom smasher.

Science Minister Johannes Hahn says Austria will no longer be a member of the European Organization for Nuclear Research — known as CERN — by 2011. He says the country's annual membership fee of $21 million (euro16 million) will be used to support other projects.

Austria has been a member of the Swiss-based organization since 1959.

Located on the Swiss-French border, CERN's atom smasher was sidelined by an electrical fault soon after its startup in September.

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