Delegates from ALICE experiment at nuclear research organisation CERN to visit University of Derby

10 October 2015

Physicists and engineers from the ALICE experiment at CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, are to visit the University of Derby next week.

Staff at the organisation, based in Switzerland, are currently probing the fundamental structure of the universe.

They use the world's largest and most complex scientific instruments to study the basic constituents of matter – the fundamental particles.

As an associate member of ALICE (A Large Ion Collider Experiment) at CERN, the College of Engineering and Technology at the University of Derby is collaborating on a scheme, called the O2project, as part of ALICE – a project to explore the early state of matter that existed in the first instants of the universe.

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The University of Derby was brought in to assist with the O2 project, as part of ALICE, due to its expertise in data science, cloud computing and electronic engineering.

Delegates from the ALICE experiment will visit the University from Monday, November 2 to Wednesday, November 4 to see its facilities, meet staff and students and sign a Memorandum of Understanding.

Professor Nick Antonopoulos, Dean of College of Engineering and Technology at the University of Derby, said: “This visit is related to the most prestigious international collaboration in research for the University.

“The Memorandum of Understanding is being signed to formalise the relationship and to enable us to develop the ALICE and University of Derby collaborative teams of staff and students to carry out cutting-edge research and development in support of the ALICE experiment and the wider CERN community.

“This will create opportunities for staff and student visits, placements and secondments. It will also enable the University to co-ordinate significant outreach activity, in educating secondary school children about the core science and activities in the experiment.

“We also hope these initiatives together will help us in our long term mission to incentivise more women in to science and engineering.”

During their visit, delegates from the ALICE experiment will be given tours of the IT and Computing and Mathematics facilities at the University of Derby and will meet with academic staff.

On Tuesday, November 3, 95 A-level Physics, Science and Mathematics students from Woodlands Secondary school in Derby, The Joseph Whitaker School in Mansfield and Newcastle-under-Lyme College will be attending an interactive session at the University of Derby with the ALICE visitors.

On Tuesday evening, Dr Paolo Giubellino, currently leading the ALICE experiment, will talk about the work of his team and its collaboration with the University in a free public lecture.

The event will take place at the University of Derby’s Kedleston Road site at 6pm.

The lecture is free but booking is essential. Book now for the CERN/ALICE Public Lecture.

The next University of Derby Open Day takes place at our Derby and Buxton campuses on Saturday, November 21. Find out more and book your place