USciences Hosts the United States Invitational Young Physics Tournament

Written by Jenna Pizzi
Published on December 13, 2016

USIYPT 2017 Schedule - January 28-29, 2017

High school students from across the country and around the world gathered at University of the Sciences for the 10th annual United States Invitational Young Physics Tournament on January 28 and 29, 2017.USIYPT

This year students from the Rye Country Day School in Rye, N.Y. took first place in this year’s tournament, the team’s captain gripping the large glass trophy Sunday night after her team’s victory was announced to the group of students from seven states, China and Tunisia.

Greg Jacobs, president of the tournament’s board, said no matter who wins, this competition is a place to come together, despite the differences in background or native language to celebrate physics.

“I believe in physics fights. I believe in this tournament. I believe in having us all together in the same place where we compete with each other, but we are also colleagues. Where we award a trophy, but we also talk to each other as physicists,“ said Jacobs “We have people from all over the world diverse backgrounds all taking the common language of physics.”

USIYPTCompeting students faced off in head-to-head physics fights. Each round, a team of four students presented their solution to one of four open-ended research problems and then were challenged, evaluated, and questioned by the opposing team of students. The students are tasked with defending their solution and continuing discussion about the solution. The winners are determined by a panel of judges who decide which teams earn the most points. 

The problems are not tasks which can be solved within a short time with known methods, like in an exam. Instead, they are more complex, open-ended questions that can be solved from different angles. These problems were published several months before to give all participants enough time to work with physicists and mathematicians to conduct experiments and hone their scientific thinking skills.

“This is a great opportunity for high school-aged students to research undergraduate-level USIYPTquestions and really challenge themselves,” said Elia v. Eschenazi, PhD, professor of physics and chair of the Department of Mathematics, Physics, and Statistics at USciences.

Eschenazi, who has worked with the United States Association for Young Physics’ Tournament, helped local teams build a presence at the events including the International Young Physicists Tournament, also known as the Physics World Cup. 

During the event at USciences, the teams faced off in preliminary rounds on Saturday, January 28, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The winning teams advance to playoff rounds on Sunday, January 29, 2017, after which the winner was announced.

See more photos here.

USIYPT 2017 Schedule - January 28-29, 2017

+ Saturday 28 January

8-8:30 a.m.: Buses available to University of the Sciences. Please try to carpool.

8:15-9 a.m.: Light breakfast available at USciences

8:45 a.m.: Opening Juror meeting with Tengiz Bibilashvili, tournament director
(McNeil Science and Technology Center (STC), AstraZeneca Auditorium, room 145)

9:15 a.m.: Opening ceremony for all participants
(McNeil STC, AstraZeneca Auditorium, room 145)

9:45 a.m.: Round 1

10:45 a.m.: Round 2

11:45 a.m.: Juror break

12 p.m.: Round 3

1-1:30 p.m.: Lunch

2 p.m.: Round 4

3 p.m.: Keynote Address, Dr. Paul Halpern, University of the Sciences: New Frontiers of Cosmology
(McNeil STC, AstraZeneca Auditorium, room 145)

3:45 p.m.: “Big Picture” for publicity purposes

3:50 p.m.: End of day 1 – Buses available for transport back to the hotel 3:30-4 p.m.

Dinner Friday night for teams is on their own.
(6 p.m.: Out-of-town Juror Dinner at a spot near the hotel. Not a required event at all, but fun.)

+ Sunday 29 January

7:30-8 a.m.: Buses available to University of the Sciences. Please try to carpool.

7:45-8:30 a.m.: Light breakfast available at USciences

8:15 a.m.: Day 2 Juror meeting with Tengiz Bibilashvili, tournament director
(McNeil STC, AstraZeneca Auditorium, room 145)

8:45 a.m.: Round 5

9:45 a.m.: juror break

10 a.m.: Round 6

11 a.m.: Round 7

12-12:30 p.m.: Lunch

12:45 p.m.: Announcement of “playoff” teams, and draw for playoff matrix

1 p.m.: Playoff round (McNeil STC, rooms 237/337); Swartz Poster Session preparation (McNeil STC Atrium)

2 p.m.*: Playoff round 2

2-3 p.m.: Swartz Poster Session
(McNeil STC Atrium)

3 p.m.: Juror break

3:15 p.m.*: Playoff round 3

4:15 p.m.*: Playoff round 4

5:15 p.m.*: Closing ceremony
(McNeil STC, AstraZeneca Auditorium, room 145)

6 p.m. (or right after the closing ceremony) buses depart for hotel. There, pizza will be available for dinner; captains’ awards will be given; closing party will commence.  All are invited.

*Playoff rounds will run back-to-back-to-back (McNeil STC, rooms 237/337). As soon as Jurors are ready, the next round begins.  The goal is to be ready to start the closing ceremony at or before 5:15 p.m.

Categories: News, Community, Event, Physics, Department of Mathematics

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