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Year 12 physicists in dialogue with CERN scientists

Year 12 students Edward and Max had the opportunity to converse online with eight scientists from CERN (European Organisation for Nuclear Research) as part of their 'CERN Zone' project.

They asked scientists questions about quarks, cosmology, and particle accelerators, as well as about life at CERN.

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and other accelerators at CERN.

Edward asked about the scientists' opinions on whether everything that we know about Physics is wrong. They proceeded to provide various insights, including how our knowledge of Physics is incomplete and our models, despite their limitations, still attempt to explain the fundamentals of our universe. From the subatomic realm of particle spin values to the colossal scale of the Large Hadron Collider, the scientists explained how their work impacted Physics as we know it.

Initially, we entered CERN Zone without any prior knowledge of what it may involve, with only the recommendations of our teacher to give it a go. There we discovered how little we knew about Physics, revealing much to yet be learnt, as well as the huge gap in knowledge between us and the scientists attending. This was a great opportunity to learn a bit about the work that the CERN scientists do, as well as a chance to get a glimpse at some university-level Physics from those who use it in their everyday work. 

Max and Edward, year 12 

The students asked some brilliant questions and were fantastic ambassadors for Tonbridge Grammar and the CERN Project, so thank you.

cern project organisers

If students would like to have the opportunity to talk to CERN scientists at the next monthly event, please contact Mrs Boddy, Subject Leader Physics.