Last week, Sixth Form physicists went on an inspiring visit to the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory to explore particle physics first hand and meet the scientists who work there. Their journey to knowledge consisted of several talks such as ‘A Brief Guide to Particle Accelerators’ and ‘The Fundamentals of Particle Physics’. A guided tour included such highlights as the linear accelerator, the synchrotron, ISIS, a neutron source used in neutron scattering experiments to study the atomic structure and dynamics of materials. Our guide informed us that more than 10,000 scientists work at RAL and £4 billion is spent every year!
There were hands-on afternoon workshops including a competition to be the first to trace the Higgs Boson. Anna and Manmeet were the lucky winners and received an appropriate prize. The day ended with a final talk on ‘Everyday applications of Accelerators’ followed by an interactive electronic voting quiz which was enjoyed by all.