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Undergrads join in cutting-edge physics research overseas

CERN student participants Sacramento State undergraduates and faculty have been working on one of the world’s leading physics projects, thanks to a National Science Foundation grant that funds the University’s participation in the ATLAS Experiment. Sac State is the sole undergraduate-only participant in the collaboration, which involves research at the Large Hadron Collider – part of the CERN complex near Geneva.

“The ultimate goal is to find the essential building blocks of the universe,” says Sac State Physics Professor Joshua Moss. He has worked nine years with the collider’s ATLAS Experiment, which in 2012 produced the first observable Higgs boson particle. Sac State’s ATLAS program is operated by the Department of Physics and Astronomy.

Haley Marez and Caleb Mosakowski are the students taking part in the work at CERN this year. “It’s nice to introduce these concepts to younger students before they get to grad school,” Moss says. “It gives them an opportunity most students don’t have, plus spending 10 weeks at CERN is never a bad thing.”
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