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CERN opens its doors to the world

Geneva, 4 July 2013. From 27 to 30 September 2013, CERN1 is putting on a long weekend of events and activities as a way of sharing its research and discoveries with its community and the wider public.

On Saturday, 28 and Sunday, 29 September, CERN will open up its installations to the general public. With the slogan “Our Universe is Yours”, these two Open Days will put the spotlight on CERN's discoveries and experiments, as well as the fantastic machines that lead to these discoveries.

From 9.00 a.m. to 8.00 p.m., visitors will have the chance to meet CERN’s researchers, engineers and technicians and to explore their laboratories, technical halls, experiments and accelerators at the biggest particle physics centre in the world. There will be some 40 visitor points: highlights for visitors to explore on the surface will include experiments at the antimatter factory, the cryogenic and crystal laboratories and the halls housing the enormous magnets. Underground, they will be able to visit the points of the LHC – the world’s largest accelerator – and its experiments.

The Open Days have been scheduled within the Long Shutdown of the accelerators, during which important work is being carried out so that the LHC can run at a higher energy when it restarts in 2015.

As places on the underground visits are strictly limited, an electronic ticket office will be open throughout the second half of August: people will be able to reserve up to four tickets, which will be valid for a specific day and timeslot. The tickets will be made available on the website progressively over a period of three weeks to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to book them.

As well as the visits, numerous other activities and presentations have been planned. Around 100,000 visitors are expected over the course of these two Open Days. Free park and ride services will be provided to facilitate access, with shuttle buses from local car parks to the various CERN sites. All the visits and activities are also free of charge. Information is continually being added to the website at: www.cern.ch/opendays2013

Three other events are also being organised around these Open Days.

On 27 September, CERN will celebrate its discoveries with its industrial and institutional partners. More than a thousand guests from businesses and institutes that collaborate with CERN are expected at this day of visits and presentations.

In the evening on 27 September, “Origins 2013” will take place and will be streamed live online as part of the European Researchers' Night, a European Commission initiative. Eminent scientists, including Nobel Prize winners, will take the floor at CERN’s Globe of Science and Innovation in Geneva, the UNESCO headquarters in Paris and the Salaborsa square in Bologna to describe breakthroughs in research into the infinitely big and the infinitesimally small. These two fields of research converge, offering us a better understanding of the origins of our Universe. In addition, researchers will engage in discussion with small groups of visitors in a new kind of speed dating: scientific speed dating. This event, which members of the public must sign up to attend, is being organised in collaboration with the Italian Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica (National Institute for Astrophysics, INAF), the Italian Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare (National Institute for Nuclear Physics, INFN), the European Space Agency (ESA), the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and UNESCO, with the European Commission’s support. More information is available on the Origins 2013 website: www.origins2013.eu

Finally, on 30 September, CERN’s personnel and users are invited to attend a “Bosons & More” thank you party. That evening, the Alan Parsons Live Project will perform an exclusive concert accompanied by the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. A competition will be launched on the Open Days website at the end of August giving members of the public a chance to win tickets to the concert, with 500 up for grabs.

For more information about the Open Days : www.cern.ch/opendays2013

For more information about Origins 2013 : www.origins2013.eu


Contact details:

CERN Press Office:
+ 41 22 767 80 25
+ 41 22 767 34 32


1. CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, is the world's leading laboratory for particle physics. It has its headquarters in Geneva. At present, its member states are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Romania is a candidate for accession. Israel and Serbia are associate members in the pre-stage to membership. India, Japan, the Russian Federation, the United States of America, Turkey, the European Commission and UNESCO have observer status.