ATLAS and CERN celebrate International Women’s Day
8 March – ATLAS Collaboration and Paola Catapano
In honour of International Women’s Day, the ATLAS experiment shared the stories of seven women from the collaboration. “There are many misconceptions about our work as physicists,” says ATLAS physicist Reina Coromoto Camacho Toro. “Physics relates to everyday events but it still remains foreign to most people and this needs to change."
CERN showcases some of the great women who have broken down barriers in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) through the six decades of CERN’s history.
In Theory: why bother with theoretical physics?
8 March- by Harriet Kim Jarlett
In the second feature in our In Theory series we explore what it takes to make someone a theoretical physicist. Boring and complicated are words often associated with people’s impression of physics in general. For some theoreticians working at CERN, physics wasn’t the career they saw for themselves – their own lessons in the subject were dull and off-putting. Instead they imagined themselves as mathematicians, doctors and engineers.
It took teachers with a true passion for the subject – who saw beyond the mathematics to the fundamental questions it answers about nature – to show these future physicists their true calling. For others, while it would take them time to discover theoretical physics, their love of the subject was ignited by childhood pleasures long before anyone could make it seem boring.
Historic moment as SESAME begins storage ring installation
8 March – by Harriet Kim Jarlett
The first of the 16 cells of SESAME’s storage ring was installed recently in the shielding tunnel in the Center’s experimental hall in Allan, Jordan. SESAME will be the Middle East’s first synchrotron light source.
After many years in the making, commissioning of SESAME is scheduled to begin in 2016, serving a growing community of some 300 scientists from the region.
UK launches Institute for Research in Schools
4 March – by James Gilles
On 3 March, the Institute for Research in Schools, IRIS, was launched. Building on the CERN@school initiative, IRIS provides opportunities and support for school students and their teachers to take part in authentic research in school.
Among the Institute’s key aims are nurturing the potential and ability of young people to contribute to the scientific community, increasing the uptake of post-16 maths, science and technology courses, increasing applications for STEM subjects at university, especially among girls, enhancing teachers’ expertise and job satisfaction in order to retain and recruit more to the profession, and engaging Universities and Industry in sustained interaction with schools.
Congratulations to SuperKEKB for “first turns"
28 February – ALICE Collaboration
Congratulations to the SuperKEKB electron-positron collider in Tsukuba, Japan. On 10 February, the collider succeeded in circulating and storing a positron beam moving close to the speed of light through more than a thousand magnets in a narrow tube around the 3-kilometre circumference of its main ring. Then, on 26 February, it succeeded in circulating and storing an electron beam around its ring of magnets in the opposite direction. The achievement of "first turns", which means storing the beam in the ring through many revolutions, is a major milestone for any particle accelerator.
Focus on: Siegfried Förtsch
28 February – ALICE Collaboration
Siegfried Förtsch is the new run coordinator for the ALICE experiment. The ALICE Matters team would like to wish Siegfried a successful, exciting and problem-free year of run coordination. We would also like to thank Federico Ronchetti, his predecessor, for the amazing work he did over the past two years.
For Siegfried, this is not just a personal achievement: “I am proud, but I am mainly happy for my institute and for my country. South Africa is a small but growing player, not only in ALICE, but also in ATLAS and ISOLDE, the other experiments in which the country is involved.”