The fund is part of a larger £ 60 million investment from the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) to keep the UK at the forefront of global particle physics research and to support the next generation of UK particle physicists.
Physicists at the University of Sheffield have received more than 2.6 million in prize money for solving fundamental questions about the structure of the universe.
The 2.68 million grant from the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is part of a wider £ 60 million investment to put the UK at the forefront of global particle physics research and to support the next generation of particle physicists.
Particle physics is the study of the world, both with the smallest possible scale and the highest achievable force, seeking answers to fundamental questions about the structure of matter and the structure of the universe.
Lee Thompson, a professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Sheffield, will lead the institute’s particle physics program, which aims to solve basic questions such as:
- What is the universe made of and why?
- Why is the universe made of matter and not anti-matter?
Particle physics group activity includes the search for dark matter – a hypothetical form of matter that is responsible for about 85 percent (five-sixths) of matter in the universe. Despite being first discovered in 1933, it has not yet been directly observed.
Elsewhere, Sheffield’s team is participating in a large, versatile atlas experiment at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider to explore new particles. Other team members collaborated on next-generation neutrino experiments in Japan and the United States to observe subtle differences between particles and antiparticles.
The STFC investment will fund teams from a total of 18 UK universities to conduct world-leading particle physics research over the next three years.
STFC finances UK particle physicists working on a wide range of experiments worldwide. Research teams are working to solve groundbreaking challenges in particle physics, including the race to detect dark matter, the investigation of neutrino oscillations, and the search for proton loss – all key questions in basic physics that we still do not have the answers to.