Record number of submissions for “Beamline for Schools”

Beamline for Schools,DESY,students
Winners of the 2019 Beamline for Schools competition work on their projects at DESY Hamburg (Image: CERN)

The deadline for the seventh edition of the Beamline for Schools competition expired on 31 March 2020. An exceptionally high number of proposals has been received despite the current difficult situation worldwide. In total, 198 proposals from 47 countries have been submitted. Outside of the very first edition in 2014, this marks a new record! We thank the more than 1400 students worldwide for their motivation and engagement.

This year again, white spots on the world map could be filled with countries which have taken part in this competition for the very first time: Guatemala, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Nigeria, North Macedonia, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan and Tanzania. This confirms the international character of this competition. A total of 43% of all proposals are coming from CERN Member or Associated Member States and 57% from non-Member States. Furthermore, seven teams collaborated across borders and consisted of students from several countries each.

Since 2014, the Beamline for Schools competition invites teams of high-school students to propose a scientific experiment that they want to perform. The teams behind the selected projects get to see it carried out at a fully-equipped accelerator beamline. Due to CERN's shutdown of its accelerators for maintenance and upgrade, the winning experiments in 2020 will be run at DESY in Hamburg, Germany in autumn.

Now that the submission phase is over, the evaluation process has started, with about 50 experts involved. Besides the two winning teams, we will also announce shortlisted teams winning extra prizes. The official press release announcing the winners of this year's BL4S competition will follow in June, so stay tuned!

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Beamline for Schools is an Education and Outreach project funded by the CERN and Society Foundation and supported by individual donors, foundations and companies. The 2020 competition is partly supported by the Wilhelm and Else Heraeus Foundation, with additional contributions from the Arconic Foundation and the Fund Ernest Solvay, managed by the King Baudouin Foundation.