This orb is actually an RF cavity from the Large Electron-Positron Collider, the predecessor to the Large Hadron Collider. Resonant frequency cavities are used in particle accelerators for the actual acceleration part. Standing electromagnetic waves are used to push the particles forward. You can play a simple game that demonstrates basically how it works here. It might be interesting to know a few things about particle accelerators in the coming years since CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research that housed LEP and now the LHC, is likely to be making some big announcements about the Higgs boson, supersymmetry and the like.