Two teams of high-school students, one from the Praedinius Gymnasium in Groningen, Netherlands, and one from the West High School in Salt Lake City, USA, have won the 2019 Beamline for Schools competition (BL4S). In October, these teams will be invited to the DESY1 research centre in Hamburg, Germany, to carry out their proposed experiments together with scientists from CERN and DESY.
Beamline for Schools is a unique international competition that is open to high-school students all over the world. The students are invited to submit a proposal for an experiment that uses a beamline. Beamlines deliver a stream of subatomic particles to any given set-up, making it possible to study a broad variety of properties and processes in various scientific disciplines. They are operated at laboratories such as CERN and DESY.
Since Beamline for Schools was launched in 2014 almost 10,000 students from 84 countries have participated. This year, 178 teams from 49 countries worldwide submitted a proposal for the sixth edition of the competition.
Due to the second Long Shutdown of CERN’s accelerators for maintenance and upgrade, there is currently no beam at CERN, which has opened up opportunities to explore partnerships with other laboratories, namely DESY.
The shortlist consisted of 20 teams, ten of which received a special mention. This is the second time that a Dutch team has won the competition. Previous winners came from schools in the Netherlands, Greece, Italy (twice), South Africa, Poland, the United Kingdom, Canada, India and the Philippines.
Beamline for Schools is an Education and Outreach project funded by the CERN & Society Foundation and supported by individual donors, foundations and companies. For 2019, the project is partially funded by the Wilhelm and Else Heraeus Foundation; additional contributions have been received from the Motorola Solutions Foundation, Amgen Switzerland AG and the Ernest Solvay Fund, which is managed by the King Baudouin Foundation.