Reopening of schools: draft of the anti-Coronavirus security protocol

Measurement of fever, parents out of school as much as possible, swabs in case of fever. But also masks for everyone, differentiated paths in the corridors, spaced class entrances. These are the points of the protocol for safety in schools that the unions have submitted to the Ministry of Education and which is used to bring the teachers back to the classroom, in view of the high school exam but above all of the return next September.

Masks obligation

The main points of the protocol concern the safety of the staff and the prescriptions of the principals which are the equivalent of the employer in the individual institutions: they will have to ensure the information and training of the staff and all those entering the schools and to draw up a plan for cleaning and sanitizing that will make the rooms safe. The obligation of masks in the classroom and in the corridors will be there for all adults who enter school buildings. As for the students, it will be to be evaluated respecting the general rules that concern minors.

A class every quarter of an hour

The entrances of the external ones will have to be reduced to the minimum, and for everyone there will be the mandatory fever measurement. The distances must be kept inside and outside the school: therefore, gatherings at the entrance and exit must be avoided. For this there will be queues of students like the ones we saw in front of supermarkets and the classes will have to enter staggered, at least 15 minutes. If possible, entry and exit must take place from different doors.

The paths

Schools will have to transform themselves, not only because there will be fewer students in the classroom and the safety distances must always be kept, but on the ground there will be marked the paths to follow in case of moving inside the buildings. Gyms and workshops can be used for other educational activities, if new spaces are needed to space out classes and pupils.

Principals: “Clear rules are needed”

After the presentation, the unions will be able to submit their comments or requests for changes. The principals have already spoken: “The protocol is absolutely necessary but it must be unambiguous and must not present interpretative margins that could involve risks for collective health”, writes the National Association of principals. The fear is that managers will be exposed to “improper responsibilities”: “We are ready, as always, to answer for those that belong to us, but not for others. This is why clear rules are needed, and above all, respectful of everyone’s skills and prerogatives ».

May 7, 2020 (change May 7, 2020 | 5:16 pm)



Maturity 2020, the no to exam in class is growing. How credits are converted

While there is discussion about what to do for the September resumption, another grain breaks out on the table of Education Minister Lucia Azzolina. The National Headquarters Association publishes a note explaining that not said that the exam in school can actually be done. Patience if the distance examination has never been tried by anyone and is likely to bring more problems than anything else, patience for the importance of the test for the children: the fear of contagion still has the upper hand. It is explained in the note that among the managers, teachers and Ata staff there are considerable doubts about the health risk that one could run by being in the classroom for several days to complete the exams. Even in full awareness of the symbolic value of the examination – the principals write – all the circumstances in which it should take place must be carefully weighed. The real problem must be tackled and resolved as soon as possible: defining specific safety protocols concerning the tools, procedures and related responsibilities. We cannot leave schools alone – and the managers who run their business – in deciding how to organize themselves. We need clear rules and they serve immediately. As for Lazio explains Mario Rusconi, head of the association presici of the region: In Rome, the building-school heritage in about 70% of cases dates back to before the 70s so the wide spaces such as gyms, lecture halls and corridors spacious are really difficult to find. Against the face-to-face exam, there is also a petition from the school partisans on And the unions, from the CGIL to the CISL and the UIL, ask the government for answers as soon as possible: Without the security protocol there is no possibility of reaching maturity, said by Francesco Sinopoli (Flc CGIL).


Coronavirus, the voices of the lockdown boys: diary of quarantined students
Camilla: we won’t be the same as before
The waivers

From the ministry they say that the protocol for the examination is almost ready. But it is true that in these days in which the commissions are being formed (all composed of internal members, except the president) the apprehension of the principals for the possible defections of the teachers is growing: the deadline for the composition was April 30 but not all are ready. In the event of renunciation by the professors – they must necessarily be part of it as an Italian and a subject of orientation – they can draw on colleagues, perhaps younger, from the same class. As an extreme ratio, the hypothesis of hiring ad hoc alternates is envisaged.

The new credits

Meanwhile, the ministry is doing the accounts to remodel – as announced last week – the credits accrued by the boys in recent years: in fact, they will be worth many more than usual, up to 60 of the 100 points of the final vote. Instead, the only surviving proof of maturity, the interview, will be worth up to 40 points at most. According to rumors and pending the order, there are two hypotheses in the field: that the third year is worth 18 points, the fourth 19 and the last 23 or that you choose to count them until 18-20-22. The conversion of credits will still be done before the start of the test scheduled for June 17.

May 4, 2020 (change May 4, 2020 | 5:01 pm)



Half in class and half at home? Azzolina brakes: only for high school. A special unit to help the principals in September

If he returns to the starting box: the mixed teaching – half students in class and half connected from home – which on Saturday the Minister of Education Lucia Azzolina seemed to have identified as a solution for returning to school in September becomes an «element of debate and not a decision. ” She wrote it herself on her Facebook page: too many protests from parenting committees and even from political forces. It is possible that in the end – the deputy minister Anna Ascani explained – this remains an option for high school students, but not for the little ones.
So what are those “flexible solutions to adapt to various age groups and school structures and territorial realities, as well as the threat of contagion”? And will there be regions where we will return to normal? Patrizio Bianchi, president of the commission of experts who has to produce solutions for the new school year, intervened to explain what is being done at the ministry in view of September. “The one identified by the minister is scenario zero – he explains -. With variants that have to be weighed, because there are both first grade children and high school graduates ».

Look for new spaces

Bianchi anticipates that the plan will be based on two principles: that of the autonomy of the schools that will be called to draw up proposals – the principals will be helped by “a special unit of the ministry to organize themselves better” – and that of collaboration between schools and bodies rooms “to be able to use the spaces that exist” in the different realities. But one thing is clear: do not expect miracles for September. Where there are problems of overcrowding of the classes – not in elementary school where the average of the pupils is 19 – or of school structures, a multiannual plan is necessary: ​​”We have been saying for ten years that the ideal size of a class is 10- 12 children ». By the end of next week the commission of experts will make the first concrete proposals. The President of the PNA Antonello Giannelli also has doubts about mixed teaching: “It is very difficult: institutions should be wired and there are problems of a pedagogical nature: setting up a lesson in the presence is different from what should be done at a distance” .

The grain maturity

For elementary school students, Ascani speculates “experiential learning of Montessori inspiration”: groups (small) will be able to carry out different activities on alternate days, with greater attention to sport, music, art and many activities, including digital creation . The unions but also the principals and the majority forces ask for a serious and broad confrontation, but above all as regards flexibility and that is the decisions of the individual schools “a national orientation framework is needed”. The teachers’ knot remains open: it is true that there are fewer students this year and no staff cuts have been made, but teachers are unlikely to be enough if the classes will be many more than the current ones: it will be possible to resort to associations and volunteers to organize alternative activities. Meanwhile, the controversy over maturity returns: this time it is the principals who are the spokespersons of the teachers’ doubts and fears and ask for a protocol for safety as soon as possible, otherwise it is better to return to the hypothesis of distance maturity.

May 4, 2020 (change May 4, 2020 | 08:51)



Reopening of schools in June: against Coronavirus shifts and sanitation. Studies.

Given that school will not resume in May, the question everyone is asking: But how and when ?. Pending the solution of the Ministry of Education, politicians, experts, technicians are working to study the plans that will guarantee safe access to the classrooms for over 8 million students and 1.2 million operators, to which must be added the numbers relating to peer schools (about 950 thousand students and 200 thousand teachers). Continue to study this but without risking an outbreak of the epidemic. Everyone agrees on one point: that a protocol must be adopted to adapt all institutions and ensure that students of each level of education can adopt and follow the same indications, avoiding chaos. Open schools, company protected the title of the plan produced by the Polytechnic of Turin, which is based on staggered entrances and exits at regular intervals of time, to avoid gatherings, outdoor and distance learning activities, halving the number of pupils for classes with shifts . Stefano Parisi’s plan, drawn up with Prof. Giuseppe Bertagna, from the University of Bergamo, and Emmanuele Massagli, President of ADAPT, University of Modena as part of the Operational Plan, is also based on the need to divide students into small groups and divide their activities between classroom study, e-learning, other activities in places of culture, other outdoor activities. But let’s see in detail.


Coronavirus, compulsory distance education and promotion for all: the school at the time of Covid-19
The new rules
Halved classes and attention to nursery schools and kindergartens

For the resumption of school in Italy it is necessary to define a national protocol, similar to those drawn up for the restarting of production activities, the Polytechnic notes in about 60 pages that try to define the modalities for a safe resumption of school. Assuming that school and early childhood education services are just as crucial as productive activities for the recovery of the country, it is evident that the educational system responds to problems of family-work balance for parents, but above all to the constitutional rights of children and young people to receive education and to have access to resources for the full development of their skills. Needs and rights – it is emphasized – that have been, perhaps inevitably, compressed in recent weeks with negative consequences that have widened the social inequalities between children.
Depending on the age of boys and girls, specific assessments will have to be made, explains the Polytechnic. The smaller the children, the more difficult it is to imagine that they are able to adopt aware prevention behaviors, first of all wearing masks: it can only be made compulsory by elementary schools. After all, the study notes, the smallest ones are the least susceptible to the virus, which could therefore fall earlier. For nursery schools and kindergartens, however, the relationship between educators / children must be reconciled in terms of the need for care and care (very material) and that of safety in terms of health.
For kindergartens the number of children per educator is the reference parameter. At the nursery 0/3 years the numerical ratio of infants / educators currently 5 (from 0 to 12 months), 6 for children (from 13 to 24 months) 8 for adults (from 25 to 36 months). It is hypothesized to bring the maximum number to 5-6 for all three age groups, in order to better control not only the children, but the number of parents that revolves around them. The sections of the kindergarten are currently constituted with a minimum number of 18 and a maximum of 26 pupils, except for cases of disabled pupils: in this case it is advisable not to exceed 10 children per group. For older children, therefore from primary school upwards, the number of students per class is expected to be halved, and the implementation of an alternation of distance and face-to-face teaching by providing half the group in class and half at home with periodic shifts. Shopping? For the Turin university, the following are to be expected: Costs to be borne by the schools and the local entities and associations for all prevention devices (from Plexiglas to masks) and for sanitation; costs to be borne by local authorities for the preparation of the premises, structures and furnishings and for the renovation of outdoor spaces; management costs and logistic impact of personnel management.


Schools across Europe are ready to reopen (or have already done so)
From June to September

The plan that Parisi instead presented to the head of the government’s task force, Vittorio Colao, proposes to reopen the schools immediately, from June to September. Also in this case a subdivision of pupils is proposed, in groups of eight. On a daily and / or weekly basis, other activities in places of culture such as museums, period buildings, exhibitions, theaters, and sports activities (including visits to parks and gardens) must be distributed on intra-moenia activities, e-learning from home. botanists). The activities in this scheme take place from 8 to 17, and the school can also use Saturday morning to guarantee the shift. Since the number of teachers currently employed by the schools would not be sufficient, it is proposed to use university students attending degree courses that enable teaching as an option within the health system (an option that could also exceed the limits imposed by the advanced age of our professors). The proposal to rebuild assumes that we can reopen schools in 5 weeks, going through six key steps: health protection, defining operating rules to guarantee it to students, teachers and auxiliary staff; a general plan of the Ministry of Education to provide indications for the types of summer training offer for students and resources; national and territorial task forces; temporary modification of the teachers’ contract; greater autonomy of the school: and finally the LARSA, or workshops for the deepening, recovery and development of learning. Between one activity and another indoors there should be at least half an hour’s break, to ensure the sanitation of the rooms. Too cutting edge compared to the reality of the Italian school? The logic with which we are working is precisely that of addressing the Covid 19 emergency in many areas, with a new approach compared to the past in such a way that from the emergency we can move on to an ordinariness by modernizing the country, explains Parisi.

May 2, 2020 (change May 2, 2020 | 3:34 pm)



Maturity 2020: oral at the start with choice of question, we will talk about coronavirus. The test is worth a maximum of 40/100

The question of your choice

In liaison, the minister revealed other details that will be contained in the order coming in the coming weeks. It is confirmed that the exam will still start on June 17 and will be in the classroom. To begin with, the student will choose what to talk about. Not a term paper, says Minister Lucia Azzolina. But we don’t miss much. The oral exam of Maturit 2020, the only residual evidence of the state exam, will begin with a topic of your choice on the subject (Greek and Latin, mathematics and physics, foreign languages) that the student will have agreed beforehand with his professors, who they are the 6 commissioners who will judge them.

We will talk about the coronavirus

In the second part of the interview there will also be questions about school-work alternation, while for Citizenship and Constitution we will talk about coronaviruses: I would like teachers to listen to what the boys have to say about these months that they spent indoors at home. Azzolina defended the decision to close the schools: We did it to defend the students.

In September, the bell

As for the return to school in September, Azzolina explains that the options for resuming the school year are different. In September I want to hear the bell ringing again.

April 29, 2020 (change April 29, 2020 | 4:52 PM)



Maturity 2020, the grade changes: only 40 points from the interview. Increase the weight of the curriculum

Children and young people will not return to class, but during the summer they may return to school to play. This is the proposal that Minister Lucia Azzolina is working on and that I will present to the government colleagues who, in these days, together with the Minister for the Family Elena Bonetti, are studying proposals for the children’s activities for the summer. The first meeting between the government, local authorities and operators of the sector could already take place today to discuss the topic of what to organize for the children who stay in the city while the working parents.

Risks and protocols

For now, the technical-scientific committee remains opposed to activities for children that involve gathering. But Regions – with the forerunner of Veneto and Piedmont – and Municipalities, including Rome and Milan, have already made operational meetings to try to organize summer activities and meet families. We need precise rules and health protocols – and for this reason we are looking at the experiences of the Nordic countries, especially Norway and Denmark, which have reopened kindergartens and nursery schools for small groups and with very strict rules – and it is not said that in the end it is possible to find a solution. Azzolina’s idea that since schools remain open for administrative activities until the end of July, even after the end of the school year, in these two months they can host the municipal summer centers, as is usually the case: it is however protected places and with open spaces.

Spaced summer camps

If the proposal is accepted, the structures suitable for the summer centers will be identified by the local authorities: those with outdoor spaces – which are the majority – and not affected by renovations already planned in view of the September recovery. However, they will be sufficient given that the starting audience of children is much lower than that of the students and that some of the parents may decide to keep their children with them.


For example, it will be difficult to use high schools, where the Maturit exams will take place until mid-July: the oral interviews – which the technical scientific committee has granted can be held in attendance, at school – will begin on June 17, the day on which had to perform the Italian test. The order defining the details of the only evidence left is almost ready. An important novelty concerns the grade: in fact, the parameters to compose the hundredths available change, to adapt them to the new exam mode: the interview will be worth less than the 60 points usually assigned to the three exams. The technicians of the ministry were convinced that with the light exam it was better to give more weight to the students’ curriculum: there had been discussions of assigning half of the points (50) with the oral exam but the test could count for 40/100, while the evaluation of this last year will become much more important: of the remaining 60/100 in fact, 12 are made up of credits from the third year, 13 from those of the fourth and the others could concern the fifth. Of course, praise remains for the students who deserve it.

April 27, 2020 (change April 27, 2020 | 10:25 pm)



Maturity 2020, it will not be a normal exam. But better in class than at home

We give the graduates an oral exam in flesh and blood. Inside their school, with their teachers gathered to listen to them. Let’s take this commitment immediately and put it among the priorities, alongside economic aid to families, serological tests and the calendar of company reopenings, the writer Paolo Giordano wrote ten days ago on the Courier, challenging the government to do an act of courage and to try to organize the examination of the 2020 maturity live. After all, it is a little less than 500 thousand children, of age, who on different days and times during the month from June 17 to mid-July must reach their school for an interview of about an hour with the six professors in their class plus the committee chair.

The protocol

According to Giordano, a possible challenge. And so thinks the Minister of Education Lucia Azzolina, who has put the ministry technicians to work on the topic: she wants a health protocol to be submitted to the Higher Institute of Sanit to get the ok: masks, distancing, shifts, cleaning repeated it does not seem very complicated to find a solution: there are spaces for this in schools. It’s a shame – the students underline – for a solitary maturity because neither friends nor anxious parents will be able to participate in the ritual. But certainly the exam – however shortened and reduced to the bone – would have the dignity of a Maturit exam.

The infections

Even Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte seemed to agree on Sunday evening at the press conference, in which by answering a question he quickly mentioned the topic. Some doubt obviously still remains and concerns the possibility of moving especially in the days of the exam: much will depend on how the Phase 2 experiments that begin next week will go. If the possibility of moving is confirmed, the examination will also be done in presence.


Calendar constraints, off-site teacher, classrooms. Because Italy says no to returning to class
Why do others reopen and we don’t?
The risks of the home exam

Would an online exam be better or less risky then? From a security point of view probably s. And in fact in the decree that these days must be converted into law by the Senate, the hypothesis of an exam via electronic means present. But it is not indifferent in the choice that no experimentation has ever been carried out on this method. Not only is there the risk that the exam will turn into an unprecedented cheating and copying test: who controls the room, the presence of someone who also helps via whatsapp to gain the answers? Not only what happens if a student does not have the line, or the exam is interrupted: to those who answer that after all it would only be a test of what university exams will look like next year, it is easy to reply that maturity is not a University exam.

April 27, 2020 (change April 27, 2020 | 11:44)



Massachusetts Coronavirus cases rise to 218 – NBC Boston

The total number of coronavirus cases in Massachusetts is up to 218, public health officials said Tuesday after it had arrived at 197 the day before.

Massachusetts is one of the states in the United States with the highest number of coronavirus cases in the country so far. While nobody died from the virus locally, more than 70 people died nationwide.

Severe restrictions on daily life have been ordered, including the canceled school, the limits on gathering in groups and eating in restaurants, while the state struggles to mitigate the spread of the deadly pandemic.

Earlier Tuesday, Governor Charlie Baker said Massachusetts faces “tough days ahead” and has torn down rumors that residents have been ordered to take refuge on the spot.

President Donald Trump and the Coronavirus Task Force gave updates on the coronavirus pandemic on Tuesday, urging people to follow the CDC guidelines for at least 15 days and to act very cautiously. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin later announced a tax deferral of the IRS for those who are liable to pay taxes.

For days, most Massachusetts cases represented in the Department of Public Health numbers were related to an employee meeting held by the local biotechnology company Biogen at a hotel in downtown Boston. But it is no longer so: Tuesday’s data show 102 people linked to the meeting directly or through members of their family.

Thirty-three cases were found to be transmitted locally and 24 related to travel, according to the numbers. Another 59 remain under investigation.

Someone has coronavirus in at least 10 of the state’s 14 counties.

Eighty-nine cases were in County Middlesex, 43 in Norfolk, 42 ​​in Suffolk, 14 in Berkshire, eight in Worcester and Essex, five in Bristol and Plymouth, two in Barnstable and one in Hampden. Another case has not yet been traced to a location.

Twenty-one cases have so far been confirmed as in need of hospitalization, while 52 remain under investigation and 145 people have not needed to go to hospital.

Many officials cited the phrase “flatten the curve” while seriously reducing public events. An infectious disease expert explained what it means and why it is crucial for the public health system.

The haste to limit social activity across the nation is an attempt to prevent the virus from spreading so quickly that it overwhelms hospital intensive care units, which places like Wuhan, China and Italy have seen.


Florida Mothers United in Tragedy pushes lawmakers to act – NBC 6 South Florida

For months Laurie Giordano had been telling her son’s story to anyone who wanted to hear – about how his self-styled 16-year-old Zach, should never have collapsed in the scorching heat of Florida nearly three years ago. He died days later.

For weeks Giordano drove six hours each to meet the legislators of the Capitol to push them to act, to understand the unbearable pain of a parent who was trying to make sense of the death of a child.

At Florida’s Capitol in Tallahassee, Giordano crossed paths on Thursday with Lori Alhadeff, who lost 14-year-old daughter Alyssa while filming the Parkland school. Both talked about how the tragedy and loss are motivating them to put pressure on legislation to save other children and parents from suffering.

Giordano and Alhadeff are connected for their grief over the loss of children and work to convince lawmakers to make schools safer, albeit in different ways.

Alhadeff has returned to urge lawmakers to request panic buttons in schools for faster help. This was one of the many school security measures generated by the shootings of February 14, 2018, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School which killed 17. The bill, known as “Alyssa’s Law”, requires that every school campus elementary, middle and high schools both public, including charter schools, to establish a mobile system to alert authorities of emergencies.

And Giordano was back on Capitol Hill sitting in the public gallery that overlooked the floor of the Senate, where lawmakers unanimously approved a bill renamed “Zachary Martin Act”. The legislation would require public schools across Florida to do more to prevent heat-related injuries and deaths.

For a few minutes, they talked about their children and their shared mission. Giordano admired the pendant hanging on Alhadeff’s neck that bears Alyssa’s smiling face.

“I don’t know how it all happened in your tragedy, but I kept thinking that help was coming,” Alhadeff told Jordan on that fateful day in February 2018.

“And help wasn’t coming,” Giordano interrupted, finishing Alhadeff’s thought.

Another distressed Florida mother, Denise Williams, wandered the Capitol on Thursday to begin lobbying for a new law on behalf of her daughter Terissa Gautney, who died on a school bus in 2018.

Ever since they lost their daughter, Williams and her husband have pushed school boards and sought the help of lawmakers to request lifesaving training for school bus drivers and better communication equipment on school buses.

He drove 250 miles (400 kilometers) from his home in Clearwater to the Capitol, describing the trip as a decision sprinkles of the moment. She sat down to watch the Senate and the Chamber conduct business, and did everything she could to plan her next steps towards making change.

“I came here to see what I could have done,” said Williams.

Williams would later cross paths with Alhadeff on Capitol Hill. He said he wanted to learn from Alhadeff, who is now a member of the Broward County school board.

“Our children have been lost in a traumatic situation and my heart breaks for any other mother. And I can feel the pain they feel, “said Alhadeff of Williams and Jordan.” Even if it involved different types of tragedies, it is still the pain of losing a child. “

Giordano’s son died in the summer of 2017 after collapsing in the Florida heat during rehearsals.

After the death of his son, Giordano founded the Zach Martin Memorial Foundation, which worked to raise awareness of the dangers of heat-related stress. As part of its work, the foundation donated 40 cooling tanks to schools across Florida.

His son, he said, would still be alive if life-saving equipment were on the sidelines during rehearsals – perhaps a tub full of water – to immediately cool his body.

“I’m exhausted, but it’s okay. Once this is over, I’m going to collapse for a week, “said Giordano waiting for lawmakers to take action on his bill.

“A six-hour trip is a long time to be alone with your thoughts,” he said, “that’s when emotions are really difficult. That’s when tears flow.”

If approved by the legislature and signed by Governor Ron DeSantis, public schools should have a tub or other large container filled with cold water on the sidelines during all games and practices. Schools should also have defibrillators to revive affected athletes. The proposed law would also require schools to train staff on how to recognize signs of heat-related ailments, including potentially fatal heatstrokes, and to take life-saving actions.

But even on the verge of success, Giordano said there is little comfort.

“I still cry every day,” he said. “There is no consolation. No, it doesn’t improve. “


Will a muon accelerator come after the “Large Hadron Collider”?

In the underground tunnel of the 27-kilometer “Large Hadron Collider” during repair work. In the largest particle accelerator and storage ring of the European research center Cern near Geneva, high-energy protons collide with one another. This triggers processes that took place shortly after the Big Bang.
Picture: AFP

The LHC, the large storage ring of the Cern, has been in operation for many years. Will the successor become a collider for muons? The prospects are good. Because now it is clear how to bundle the unstable particles into a beam.

Dhe particle physics faces a crossroads. It has had incredible success in the past years and decades. Since the detection of the Higgs boson – as the last remaining elementary particle of the standard model – almost eight years ago, there have been no further groundbreaking discoveries in this area. Phenomena such as the existence of a mysterious dark matter that dominates the universe suggest that there should be more types of elementary particles than are known to date. But even the strongest particle accelerators have so far not been able to provide the slightest indication of such exotic forms of matter.

That is why the call for more powerful accelerator systems is getting louder. Only these are hardly payable anymore. The currently largest and with a circumference of 27 kilometers also the largest particle accelerator, the “Large Hadron Collider” (LHC) at the European research center Cern near Geneva, devoured more than five billion euros. Even if the LHC should be in operation for at least fifteen years, many researchers already want a machine with a circumference of 100 kilometers. However, this should then cost more than 20 billion euros. A concept that had previously appeared in theoretical speculations could offer a cheaper solution: a particle accelerator for muons. These heavy relatives of the electrons are unstable, but otherwise have ideal properties to use them as projectiles in particle physics. However, it has proven extremely difficult to generate directed rays from muons. Now physicists is the international MICE collaboration (Muon Ionization Cooling Experiment) a decisive step on the way to becoming a muon accelerator.

The best of two worlds

Most particle accelerators use electrons, protons or ions to create new particles. For this purpose, they are accelerated with high-frequency fields and forced onto circular orbits with strong magnets in order to generate the energy required for collision experiments. However, two factors limit the energy that can be achieved in storage rings. In the case of light electrons, it is the so-called synchrotron radiation: Similar to the way electrons emit radio waves in a radio antenna when they are accelerated in an alternating field, the electrons also lose energy in the form of high-energy radiation when they circulate on circular orbits. And the higher the energy with which electrons circle, the greater the energy losses. These have to be replaced constantly. But at some point they are so big that electrons cannot be accelerated any further.

The location of the three existing storage rings PS, SPS and LHC of the European research center Cern near Geneva. The planned FCC particle accelerator (green) is also shown. In the 100 km long storage ring, electrons and their antiparticles, the positrons, could be put on a collision course.

With heavy particles such as protons, such losses do not play a major role. However, this requires strong magnets to keep hydrogen nuclei on their orbit. And the higher the energy, the stronger magnetic fields are necessary. At some point, even the currently strongest superconducting magnets reach their limits. A muon beam would have advantages here. Because the mass of the muons is only around a tenth of the proton mass, you would not need such strong magnets to keep them stable on high energy. Storage rings for muons could be made more compact and cheaper.