The challenge of physical being for a day

On 21 February, the Campus UTAD was a meeting place for high school students interested in physics of particles under the International Masterclasses 2018. On that date, New York, London, Bologna, Athens and Marseilles welcomed in their universities secondary students aged entres 15 and 19 days, which to researchers and teachers linked to CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Researche) might experience one day how to do research in this area and were able to hear, see and work with their own hands experiences of actual data held at CERN and make contact with the most recent studies in the field of particle physics.

This year was the ninth time the UTAD opened its doors to welcome this initiative. In all, 110 students, accompanied by nine teachers from five secondary schools: two in the city of Vila Real (Camilo Castelo Branco and St. Peter) and three out (Little Village Aguiar, Tondela and Tabuaço) were received by researchers from the department of Physics, School of UTAD Technology Sciences and a team of four scientists of Instrumentation and Experimental Particle Physics Laboratory (LIP).

The general knowledge of speech – Particle Physics – was the responsibility of Peter T. Abreu (LIP- Lisbon), which dealt with the constitution of the universe, using a prospective story to show the current knowledge of the fundamental particles of nature, the so-called Standard Model and draw attention to the great mysteries that still stand in the horizon of this knowledge and are a desfio for future generations. Local lecture was held by Marco Duarte Naia (DF UTAD) entitled “A (s) colors (anti) matter.” Spoke small experiments that are performed in the auxiliary accelerator at CERN, particularly the experiments for the characterization of antimatter with hydrogen antiátomo – the antihydrogen. This core atom with a negative (antiproton) and an electron (antieletrão) was first established in 1995 and since then have been experimentally conducted multiple experiments to verify their characteristics and behaviors. Last year the first results were published in espetroscópicas measures similar to that performed in the late nineteenth / early twentieth century to hydrogen. The results of Alpha-2 experiment did not show, so far, no difference in the electromagnetic spectrum and the behavior in the magnetic field seems to be predicted by the Standard Model. Another experience in preparation, called Aegis, is trying to measure the acceleration of free fall of antihydrogen, in order to measure the first time the interaction of antimatter as gravity field. The last lecture “Accelerators and Detectors” is submitted by Ricardo Gonzalo (LIP-Lisbon). In this presentation in addition to explaining the operation of the main charged particles accelerators and how to make the detection of different types of particles, gave important tips signing of these particles in the installed deteres the Atlas experiment at CERN that provided the data for practice.

In the second part of the day, the students were able to contact with the researchers and scientists, and can also handle real data. Despite the superficial knowledge of the subject, they were able to identify characteristic signatures of particles and sort events resulting from the collision of high-energy protons. Students can then analyze the spectra obtained by you and make an assessment of their work. Data from all the students are sent to a center and are combined with the data of all students at the same time working at other research centers in Europe – apart from Vila Real, were London, Bologna, Athens and Marseille.