The 4 students of the ILC Club visited CERN on the outskirts of Geneva on August 2nd, where they met with Dr. Lyn Evans, the leader of the Linear Collider Collaboration which heads the ILC project internationally. During their talk, they touched upon the quintessential foundation of science.
The 4 students greeted Dr. Evans in English when he entered the meeting room, smiling and shaking his hand. They were nervous at first, but as they heard Dr. Lyn’s impassioned ideals about science (through the interpreting of Prof. Masaya Ishino of the International Center for Elementary Particle Physics at the University of Tokyo), they started to loosen up.
Sakura Sugawara: “How will Iwate change if the ILC is realized?”
Dr. Evans: “It will become like CERN. It won’t be just young researchers – their children and families will come to the area from around the world. It will be necessary to have schools with education in English. Iwate will become even more international.”
The scientist and the students talked about the attraction of science, and why Dr. Evans became a scientist.
“What’s your dream?” asked Yu Osakashita, to which Dr. Evans laughed, “I want to know more about the Higgs boson, and then I want to know what dark matter really is. We know that dark matter exists, but we don’t know what it is. So I’d like to know more about it.”
Particle physics research requires experiments with many different approaches. “It’s important to look at things through a number of different ways, like with the Large Hadron Collider, the ILC, or the AMS (Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer on the International Space Station). I hope that Iwate becomes a hub for international science (with the ILC),” said Dr. Evans, cheering on the project.
Main points of the ILC Club’s visit with Dr. Evans:
I’m working hard so that the Japanese national government will host the ILC in Tohoku. I know they are still deliberating but I’m hoping they’ll accept the project. If the ILC is realized, it will be an international facility on par with CERN. There, researchers from around the world will gather.
I think that science moves forward any time someone thinks, ‘why’.
I contributed to research that was awarded the Nobel Prize. I’ve learned a lot about elementary particles, but there is still so much I don’t know. I’d like to know the ‘why’ behind so many things. I’d like to learn more about that at the ILC, too.
What do you think is interesting about science?
I think anyone can love science. The ILC would be a particularly amazing facility. It would be the only one of its kind in the entire world. Science aims for and challenges the limits of technology. It is crucial to continue to learn more about new things.
What kind of discoveries are you aiming to find with the ILC?
Our first goal will be to study the Higgs boson (found by the LHC in 2012) further in-depth. We will also look into the top quark, the heaviest particle, more precisely. We’re also aiming to find a new particle – for example, dark matter. The ILC will be a powerful machine that can do many different things.
What can the people of the Kitakami mountain region do to support the ILC?
We will build this large facility in a place where many people already live. Since it will be placed in an existing environment, we would be thrilled if the people welcomed us with open arms. It’s crucial to the ILC that the local people are passionate about the project. Not just physicists, but people from around the world are hoping to build the ILC in Iwate.
A Standard Model equation T-shirt – personally signed
After the ILC Club students spoke with Dr. Lyn Evans on August 2nd, he signed their T-shirts that they had bought at the CERN gift shop.
Dr. Evans signed his name with white pen on the backs of the black T-shirts, which delighted the 4 students.
Printed on the T-shirts is the equation for the Standard Model of physics. Dr. Evans smiled when he saw the 4 students arrive in these shirts, and asked them if they had seen the stone monument outside engraved with the same equation.
After their talk, the 4 students headed to the CERN Control Centre, and took a look at the stone monument outside.
“Our understanding (of everything) right now is that 4-line equation. I believe that there is an even simpler, more beautiful world out there. I’m a scientist because I want to see how things really are,” said their guide Prof. Masaya Ishino (of the International Center for Elementary Particle Physics at the University of Tokyo), which left the 4 students with a lot to think about.