By NAVEENA JAMES and LATASHAH VALLIMANALAN
AS students, we read about the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in our physics textbook, but as impressive as it sounds, not many of us really know what it’s about.
So when the BRATs were given the chance to get a tour of an exhibition about the LHC at the ArtScience museum in Singapore, we jumped at the chance. It was the exhibition’s debut in Asia.
Although we weren’t all initially interested in partical physics, we knew it would be an interesting experience anyway.
The exhibition is a simulation of the experience you would get if you visited the European Organisation for Nuclear Research’s (CERN) underground facility, the home of the LHC, buried deep underground in Geneva, Switzerland.
The ambience of the tunnel-like exhibition made us feel like we were being teleported to a different dimension. The items on display looked very complex and obviously cost a lot.
On top of that, we were inspired by the dedication of the LHC engineers, scientists and physicists who put their hearts and souls into their work.
We were pretty excited to step into a replica of a work space that belonged to Yang Mingming, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) student who presented the data that finally confirmed the existence of the Higgs boson particle.
Also on display was an opened bottle of champagne. Yes, a champagne bottle! In an exhibition about a particle accelerator, it seemed out of place. That is until we learnt that this bottle of champagne was the exact one the scientists popped to celebrate the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012.
Who knew the tiniest of particles could play a significant role in our universe? We certainly learnt a lot, not just from the experiment but also from the energy put in by thousands of men and women who were determined to make this project a success.
Science geek or not, this exhibit is a must when you are in Singapore, and you have until Feb 14 to check it out!
On top of stepping into the replica of CERN, we also had the opportunity to learn more at the Nobel Prize: Ideas Changing The World exhibition, which was at the same venue.
Frankly speaking, we didn’t know much about the Nobel Prize and how it came about. Who knew that the founder, Alfred Nobel was an inventor himself?
The Nobel Prize exhibition is truly a time machine, taking visitors on a journey through the past, present and future.
There was a lot to learn about Alfred Nobel. For example, did you know that dynamite was one of his inventions?
The talented Nobel was also a poet, and we felt melancholic as we read his poem “You Say I am a Riddle”.
As we moved through the displays, we learnt that our favourite physicist and chemist Marie Curie was the first woman to be honoured with the Nobel Prize, not only once but twice!
The exhibition gave us a chance to get to know all 900 laureates up close and personal, as there were computer displays that provided a detailed explanation of each Nobel laureate.
We left Singapore feeling very inspired by the pioneers of science who have done mankind a great service with their achievements.
These extraordinary men and women are living proof that giving up isn’t an option.