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Frank Simon | MPI for Physics | Germany

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Taking Off

This is going to be a new, hopefully interesting and enjoyable experience. OnBoardNRTI have never blogged before, and I must confess that so far I also have not been an active blog reader. I guess it is time to rethink that. Anyway, being on the move feels like a good time to start something new, so I am writing my first entry on the plane en route to Munich from Tokyo. This inspired also the title of the post… of course not too literally since the “now turn of your electronic devices, they may only be used again once the fasten seat belt signs have been switched off” thing prevents me from actually writing during takeoff. Right now, I’m on my way towards northern Japan after a little loop out to the coast, with something like almost 12 hours left to go.

Well, flying and travel in general will be a recurring theme here since this is an integral part of my life ever since I got into high energy physics 9 years ago. So, why do I do what I do?  First and foremost, because it is fun, challenging and exciting. In particle physics, we work with the biggest and most complex machines ever devised and built by man. Our research aims at understanding the deepest structures of the matter we all are made of, and to unravel the secrets of our universe. This might sound a bit cheesy, but it sure is a very good motivator to also keep going on weekends and late at night. My work focuses mostly on the development of new detector technologies for the next generation of experiments, which will (hopefully) take place at the future International Linear Collider. This machine will broaden our understanding of particle physics at the energy frontier, but more about this in later posts. I am also in the process of getting into an experiment which studies a phenomenon called CP violation. Without this mechanism in particle physics, there would be no matter in our universe, and also no physicists trying to figure out why the universe works the way it does. Again, more about this later. In fact, I am just on the way back from a collaboration meeting (collaboration name still to be decided, called SuperBelle for now) at KEK, so I guess I’ll be a reasonably frequent guest on LH 715 in the future.

I hope that over the next few months I can share my fascination with particle physics with you by showing snapshots of my life, both with science related posts and stories about my everyday life. There are exciting times ahead for me, I hope you stay tuned.

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