Daresbury scientists deliver a masterclass

Kurtis Markie and Yi Chen Hock

SCIENTISTS of the future discovered more about the technologies behind 21st century particle accelerators at a world-renowned centre for excellence.

A-Level Physics students from Priestley College were among those who attended the Cockcroft Institute at the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s Daresbury Laboratory for the annual Particle Physics Masterclass.

When the students from the gathered colleges had their own knowledge tested, Priestley’s Kurtis Markie came top of the class.

“To have the Sci-Tech campus on our doorstep provides an unmissable opportunity for our students,” said Tutor Tory Mullineux.

“The laboratory has close links with CERN and works to push the cutting edge of particle accelerator technology so it is an inspiring place to be for the students.”

The masterclass programme included a history of the Daresbury Laboratory, a lecture on particle physics delivered by the University of Manchester, scientific exercises and demonstrations as well as a Virtual Reality interactive tour of the VELA particle accelerator.

Later students were quizzed on what they had learned with former Cardinal Newman pupil Kurtis, who studies Computing, Electronics and Physics at Priestley, scoring the highest mark.

He said: “I was able to understand much more about particle accelerators, a topic which isn’t vastly covered on my Physics A-Level course, giving me a great insight into the fantastic applications they’re used for.”

Former Bridgewater High pupil Yi Chen Hock, who studies Electronics, Further Maths, Physics and Music at college, finished third in the masterclass quiz.

In a further success she recently received a Gold Medal in an AS Physics Olympiad and goes through to the next stage where she will be up against young and brilliant minds from across the country.

“Getting the Gold Award in the Physics Olympiad and coming top three in the quiz has boosted my confidence in pursuing my career aspirations to become an engineer and get good enough grades for the universities I want to apply for,” said Yi Chen.