Particle Physics Masterclass Introduces Field to Undergraduates

Birzeit University’s physics department hosted a March 26, 2015 masterclass on particle physics, an annual event aimed at introducing students to the field of particle physics and high-energy accelerators.

The day began with four talks on the topics of the “Standard Model of Particle Physics,” “Synchrotron Radiation Facilities,” “Discovering Physics with Hadron Colliders” and “Detecting Particles with ATLAS.”     

Kate Shaw from the International Center for Theoretical Physics in Italy, who is a researcher in the ATLAS experiment at CERN, coordinated the masterclass. Other contributors included Sharif Ghithan from LIP in Portugal, who is working on instrumentation for particle accelerators and got his bachelor’s degree from the Birzeit University physics department in 2006, Mahmoud Alstaty, a PhD student at Aix-Marseille University in France, and Nedaa Asbah, a PhD student at Humbolt University and DESY in Germany.  

In the hands-on session, students worked on computers to analyze data taken from the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). The masterclass closed with an interesting talk on the various careers and opportunities for students to do higher studies in Europe in the field of particle physics.    

The masterclass was sponsored by the Physics Without Frontiers project at the ICTP and the dean of the science faculty Wa’el Karain.