CERN (The European Organization for Nuclear Research) The convention establishing CERN was signed on September 29, 1954. From the original 12 signatories of the CERN convention, membership has grown to the present 20 member states. Its main function is to provide the particle accelerators and other infrastructure needed for high-energy physics research. As of 2007, about half of the world’s particle physics community, work on experiments conducted at CERN. As an international facility, the CERN sites are not officially under Swiss or French jurisdiction, and some company vehicles have diplomatic number plates.