APS News

Year 12 Trip to Cern 2014

APS physics students have come back from what will be an annual visit to the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, Geneva.  The 3 day trip allowed students to attend lectures and tours of the testing facilities of the world's greatest experiment.  The trip was a great success and the pupils were able to see first hand the cutting edge of physics.  Here are a selection of comments and photographs from the trip. 

"On all three days we were allowed to explore the French-speaking city and soak up the culture that surrounded us though I, along with the large majority of my class spent a lot of time at the lake; an expanse of water so beautiful (and cold!) that it literally took my breath away. Geneva is also home to the history of science museum, fascinating old building that explained the evolution of science from the most basic theories about the galaxy to the most sophisticated scientific principles of our time.

The first thing we did at CERN, was eat at its legendary cafeteria, where some of the world’s most revolutionary ideas have come to light. Being surrounded by physicists and engineers was rather humbling and to sit in a lecture by one of these scientists was inspiring. He spoke about the physical principals of the LHC before taking us to the cryogenic testing warehouse in which he talked us through the engineering feats of genius that makes it run. Finally we were treated with a trip to the control room of ATLAS, the largest experiment at CERN. On the third day we returned to explore the various museums at CERN and it was great to see how what we were learning in class was boosting our knowledge of the universe every day.

Though I can’t tell you in words alone just how amazing this trip was, I can tell you that I am going to take the memories of it to my grave as one of the best trips I’ve ever been on and that given the chance, I would go again without hesitation." Sam Reeder

"CERN is at the forefront of scientific innovation. Surrounded by some of the finest minds of our generation (but enough about me) we visited the site of the Large Hadron Collider. The most advanced scientific experiment in the world; shooting particles at each other at speeds incredibly close to that of light. Engulfed in knowledge and sunshine, we explored the site of some of the greatest scientific and engineering accomplishments in the last 60 years. The discovery of the Higgs Particle, development of the World Wide Web and advancements in technology such as solar panels and medical imaging.

Not only was it an incredibly informative and inspirational trip, but situated in a beautiful and clean city made it relaxing and fun as well." David Pughe

It has allowed me to integrate what I have started to learn in school with what goes on in Cern. In addition, the lecture which we got from an Italian presenter/lecturer was very interesting and has allowed us to take away valuable to knowledge about particle physics.

 Furthermore, we had plenty of time to enjoy and explore Geneva. We were given the opportunity to visit Lake Geneva but also the region around it. Due the weather being nice we were given the opportunity to swim in the lake. The highlight of the trip for me was going to CERN and seeing how everything works out." Tevfik Agcagul

"Geneva is a beautiful city that was very different from other countries I’ve been to, I felt like it represented a sense of peace and unity that other countries are yet to grasp. Upon arrival at Geneva the scenery was not as busy as one would expect but it was very different from anything I had seen before.

Upon arrival at CERN, we were taken to the canteen for food.  I was surprised to see scientists from all over the world eating in the same canteen as we were. At this moment I felt honoured to be present. One can only imagine how honoured I felt to be sitting through a lecture conducted by one of these scientists.  He talked about how physical principles (such as the concepts of dipoles and quadrupoles) were applied in the construction of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).

 We were also allowed entry into the cryogenic test facility where we saw first-hand several components that were needed to make the LHC operate.

Overall it was an amazing experience and was very crucial in understanding the details of the A2 physics course." Johniee Ekeh.