Switzerland participated this year already for the
fifth time with a crew of five central pupils in the international
To this cause, which takes place each year in another
university town, each country may send max. five users and user
inside, who may not be written yet 20 years old and not yet at
This year 62 countries with altogether 296 candidates
(of it 10 women) participated. Additionally two "Leader"
travel per country -normally central school physics instructors-
also, their functions v.a. exist to translate the English formulated
functions for the pupils and to correct and to a given pattern
evaluate afterwards the work provisionally. The final interconnection
of the work takes place then later in a discussion with the jurors,
which was placed in this case by different Italian universities
and by the Italian physics teacher federation. The evaluation
takes place for each user and each Teilnehmerin individually;
there is no " land valuation ". All functions and evaluations
are discussed and " approved beforehand " by internationally
the board, a type general assembly " of " organizers
and Leadern, in detail.
The check covers an ever five-hour experimental
and theoretical section. The experimental section consisted this
time of measurements of a torsionspendel, which additionally for
the restoring moment of a rotated steel wire a torque caused by
the force of gravity affected. This led to Nichtlinearitaeten
and under certain conditions to a behavior (so-called " Bifurkation
"), as it is own to complex systems. The measurements were
-above all also because of the dominant high temperatures in the
hall- quite delicately and required much intuitive feeling, in
particular also, because global error estimations and computation
of errors were required.
In the theoretical section three problems had to
be examined: The thermodynamics of radiant absorption in a gas,
the magnetic field of a V-shaped of curved wire (this problem
is based on a historical discussion around the results of Biot
Savart and those from Ampère) and " Swing by " - the
technique for the acceleration of space probes in the planet system
by flyby at a planet (current cause the flyby of the probe Cassini
" at " the earth is in August). Above all the functions
were physically appropriate, required very good knowledge of the
entire central school material (and some additional sections)
and a certain routine and staying power, since several subtasks
were to be processed in each case.
The solutions are evaluated with max. 50 points
(20 for the experiment, 3 x 10 for the theoretical functions)
and honors are distributed according to the following pattern:
Gold medal starting from 90 %, silver starting from 78 %, bronze
starting from 65 % and " Honourable Mention " starting
from 50 % of the achieved maximum score (means of the three best
From Switzerland started David Brunner (Jona), Samuele
Chiesa (Castel San Pietro), Gilles Duvoisin (Savigny), Patrick
Lehner (Lausen) and Andreas's bird meadow (Beggingen). All five
users achieved ranks with an honor; four received "
a Honorable Mention ", while Samuele Chiesa
won a bronze medal.
These are no results of point, but one must also
consider that such abilities are hardly promoted in Switzerland
contrary to many other countries. Thus our users could themselves
prepare an only even half day long, by being able to try the experiments
out of the passed four physics Olympiads at the new canton school
Aarau. The theoretical preparation was left to them and its teachers
in the spare time.
Also consists Swiss working group, which organizes
the elimination rounds, of 10 teachers and teachers, who operate
free of charge and without discharge of normal instruction. In
other countries of several weeks to mehrmonatige " Trainigslager
" are executed. For example Indonesia trains its five people
during three months in Djakarta.
Recruiting takes place with us almost exclusively
via personal inquiries (so we could begin this year with only
with 45 user inside and users from whole Switzerland, during e.g.
in Italy country-wide in all High Schools with several thousand
people are begun).
So seen the results that our education system can
lead in the width rightfully good results, show results of point
however not regularly to expect are. I am convinced that with
direct promotion and somewhat more means from or other "
Honourable a Mention " would have become a bronze or even
silver medal: With the correction of the work of our users it
showed up that it was not because of the physical understanding,
but that many errors were made, whom to routine lacking is to
due and with more training be avoided had.
The fact that Samuele Chiesa could receive its medal
not personally, since he was given time off by the recruit school
contrary to sportsmen only even ones for the actual checks, shows
likewise clearly that intellectual maximum performances count
I would like to still mention that Liechtenstein
took part in bronze medal for the first time with a crew with
two users and with Fabian Hassler at first attempt achieved. Liechtenstein
followed the selective procedure of Switzerland and helps with
Fritz Epple, physics teacher from Vaduz, during the preparation
of the elimination rounds.
Of course our users did not only roll physical problems;
the program, which the Italian supervisors apart from the actual
competitions offered, was just as important: With different causes
had both the pupils and pupil and " the Leader " opportunity
to become acquainted with country and people and attach international
contacts, among other things with city guidance, a Exkursion after
Cortina d?Ampezzo in the dolomites, an inspection of the Istituto
Nazinale di Fisica Nucleare in Legnaro and on the occasion of
of different classical period -, skirt and jazz concerts. Additionally
the warm summer evenings loaded to staying in one of the many
Strassencafés of Padua; many used also the opportunity, which
only 30 km removed Venice (despite heat and tourist quantity)
an attendance abzustatten. All in all thus no week for resting,
but as each time most interesting!
XXXI. Physics Olympiad takes place in July 2000
in Leicester, England. We hope to be again with a good crew thereby.
Perhaps do women for it leave themselves to inspire in the future
P. Kaufmann, new cantonal school Aarau, dept.of
1. Swiss team after the initialization
celebration (from left to the right):
Samuele Chiesa, David Brunner, Patrick Lehner, Andreas bird meadow,
Gilles Duvoisin, Elisa Carollo (more local " Guide "
of the Swiss team)
2. Swiss team with the honors after
the conclusion celebration. In the back from left to the right:
Andreas's bird meadow, Gilles Duvoisin, Patrick Lehner, David
Brunner. In front: The two " Guides " Elisa Carollo
and Sandra Foletti with bronze medal and diploma already again
of the Samuele Chiesa engaged into RS.