Beamline for Schools: be a CERN scientist for a week

The band “The Script” encourage high-school students to enter this year’s BL4S competition. (Video: footage courtesy of The Script, edited by CERN) 

Beamline for Schools (BL4S) is a competition for high-school students from around the world to win the chance to create and perform a scientific experiment on a CERN accelerator beamline. The competition is open to teams of at least 5 high-school students aged 16 and up and at least one adult supervisor.

Register now for this unique chance to become a scientist at CERN.

One or two teams will be chosen to conduct an experiment at CERN. Nine members and up to two adult coaches per team will be invited, all expenses paid, to CERN for 10 days, preferably in September 2016.

All participants will receive a certificate. Up to 30 short-listed teams will win a BL4S t-shirt for each team member, a chance to visit a nearby physics laboratory and a “Cosmic Pi” cosmic-ray detector for the school.

Cosmic rays are tiny particles originating from many places in the universe, from our own the solar system to the furthest galaxies,, travelling almost at the speed of light, and hitting the Earth from all directions. Scientists study these particles because reconstructing their history would bring meaningful information about our Universe. The Cosmic Pi detector uses a “Raspberry Pi” credit-card sized computer as a basis for a detector that records cosmic rays – a small telescope for particles. By spreading this compact detector to schools around the world, and connecting them via the internet each detector can be a pixel in the world’s largest cosmic-ray detector.

Interested to take part? Find out about the beamline and facilities on the BL4S website, register now and think about a simple, creative experiment. Submit your proposal and a 1-minute video about your proposed experiment by midnight (CET) 31 March 2016. Follow the instruction on the BL4S website and read the FAQ to know more.

Beamline for schools is a CERN & Society project, funded in 2016 in part by the Alcoa Foundation; additional contributions are received from National Instruments.