Founded in 2012, this is the eigth consecutive year that this dynamic, international school, primarily aimed at Master's students, has been offered.
This year, 46 undergraduate students from 18 different institutes in fourteen countries came together for a full week to learn about hadron collider physics. The institutes involved include: Bologna, Pisa in Italy; Ghent in Belgium; Eindhoven in the Netherlands; Bonn, Freiburg, Siegen and Göttingen in Germany; Edinburgh, Glasgow, London and Manchester in the UK; Bucharest in Romania; Santiago de Compostela in Spain; Prague in the Czech Republic; Geneva in Switzerland; Bergen in Norway; Stockholm and Uppsala in Sweden; Beijing in China; Ohio in the USA; Johannesburg in South Africa.
In particular, Ghent in Belgium, Uppsala in Sweden and Göttingen are members of the closely collaborating U4Society network. The nine lecturers of the school also came from a variety of institutes throughout the world. The students learned about the foundations of quantum field theory and hadron collider physics, particularly in the context of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN in Geneva.
Arnulf Quadt, the founder and co-organizer of the school, explains, "This type of fundamental research can only be carried out in large international collaborations with experts from all over the world. In addition, these young students learn the fundamentals of quantum mechanics, which was developed in Göttingen, among other places.” Stan Lai, a local co-organizer adds, “It is crucial at this early stage of their careers, that students gain exposure to being part of an international team where diverse ideas and creative solutions thrive. The school not only provides important lectures about particle physics, but also allows the students to network and make friends which can potentially last a lifetime."
At the HASCO school, numerous research topics relevant for hadron collider physics are discussed, among them quantum chromodynamics, jet physics, statistical methods in data analysis, accelerator physics, detector physics, physics of the top quark, and searches for supersymmetry or exotic models and particles. This year for the first time, a lecture and hands-on session on machine learning techniques and artificial intelligence were offered. This is particularly important to exploit the complete 13 TeV dataset recorded by the LHC experiments.
The HASCO school also included an extensive social program, including a barbeque with all participants and lecturers, a bowling evening, a history walking tour, and a school dinner in the city centre of Göttingen. All participating students passed the written examination at the end of the school and received 3 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) points, which can be transferred to their home universities. The students were inspired by the intense program of HASCO, which enables young scientists to engage in the dynamic field of particle physics. To the students of HASCO: Hope to see you soon and do research with you all!