Elementary Particle Physics

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International Particle Physics Masterclasses 2019
Hands-on Particle Physics

A day in the world of particle physics - a course for students on 4 April 2019


How can we investigate the smallest building blocks of the universe, the elementary particles? That question will be answered by the International Masterclasses in Elementary Particles, which takes place at LMU Munich on 4 April. The classes focus on handling real data from the ATLAS experiment at CERN: The participants learn how the detector and data analysis work – and are able to gain some hands-on experience.

What can we learn from ATLAS particle tracks?
Students participating in previous Masterclasses.
(Photo: B. Wankerl/MPP)

Particle physicists explore the smallest building blocks of matter, elementary particles. Their subject is so small that it cannot be observed. In theory. But scientists have found ways to make the infinitesimally small visible.
In accelerator systems such as the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, particles are first flung around a circular track before they collide with each other at high energies. What emerges − a chaotic pattern of particle tracks − provides important information for physicists. The famous Higgs boson was discovered in this way, for example, and it is hoped that the data will also reveal particles of dark matter or supersymmetry.

On 4 April 2019 students will once again have the opportunity to learn about the methods of particle physics in theory and practice. The one-day course is aimed at 15-to-19-year-old students from Munich and the surrounding area.

Following an introduction to particle physics and the ATLAS detector, the afternoon will be devoted to data analysis. The finale and highlight of the programme will be a live video conference. Along with other students, the Munich participants will be able to discuss their results with scientists at CERN.

Organized by the Chair for Elementary Particle Physics at the physics faculty of LMU, the Munich offer is part of the International Particle Physics Master Classes, which will be held throughout March and April 2019. More than 200 universities and research institutes from at least 50 countries that are contributing to the four experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN are involved.