First AYSS seminar: bright beginning

News, 20 May 2022

The Association of Young Scientists and Specialists of JINR launches a series of seminars that will be held in the hall of the JINR Scientists’ Club on Thursdays at 4:00 PM. On 19 May, a DLNP postdoc Yuri Malyshkin opened the series with the lecture “Baikal-GVD: at the origins of neutrino astronomy”. The format of the event and the material presentation immediately won the trust of almost fifty listeners.

In his report, the speaker spoke about the types of modern telescopes, explained what a neutrino particle is, introduced cosmic rays and relic radiation, the concept of multichannel astronomy, and the difference between a ground-based neutrino observatory and deep underwater telescopes. The lecturer touched upon the history of neutrino telescopes, dating back to the 60s of the XX century, and presented the Ice Cube project in Antarctica to listeners, which is the largest neutrino telescope to date. The audience learned the difference between the Ice Cube and the Baikal-GVD projects. Each of them has its own advantages. Thus, on Lake Baikal, strings with optical modules can be lifted onto the surface for repairs, for example. As for the southernmost continent of the Earth, modules freeze in ice and there is no possibility to pull them up. Another advantage of the project with JINR participation is that light does not dissipate but goes straight in the water of the deepest lake in the world, unlike other water . This is very convenient for conducting research. At the same time, it was noted that the projects are not rivals since a global network of neutrino telescopes is necessary to grasp all the areas of research. This network is under development now. It should be reminded that specialists have assembled 8 out of 16 Baikal-GVD clusters. It is planned to complete the telescope construction in 2025.

The audience obviously liked the open format of the lecture. It allowed listeners to ask questions right during the report. The format of a live dialogue with the speaker created a relaxed environment and whet the audience’s interest.

Yuri Malyshkin commented on his presentation. He noted that one of the aims of his lecture was to attract new qualified personnel to the Baikal-GVD collaboration. “It is necessary for any physicist to discuss their scientific work from time to time. I try to pay attention to this because we want to attract more young employees to the collaboration. We are very short of people, which is why it is important to talk about the project so that people start taking an interest in it and join the team. It really bears fruit! Thanks to the project popularisation, television came to Baikal last year. People unexpectedly come and say: yes, this is the very same Baikal-GVD, we know about it. Some of them want to work with us. As for the Ice Cube collaboration, it has 500 participants, while our collaboration has only 50. These are people who perform an experiment , therefore, more hands more opportunities,” he said.

According to Chairman of the JINR Association of Young Scientists and Specialists Vladislav Rozhkov, there is already a list of 35 lecturers. Thanks to this, such lectures will take place every week without breaks until January.

“We plan to hold these seminars on a regular basis,” Vladislav Rozhkov said. “Unlike the usual one, this seminar format differs in the fact that we decided to remove formalities, make lecture presentations more understandable, interesting. It allows young employees engaged with theoretical physics, for example, to understand well what employees from the Laboratory of Radiation Biology work on, and vice versa. It will allow creating collaborations, helping each other in solving a particular task, getting an alternative opinion of colleagues. On the other hand, it is a great opportunity to raise a new generation of lecturers.”

Varvara Maslova, one of the project supervisors, said that the idea of AYSS seminars appeared about a year ago. “Senior colleagues have already known each other very well,” she said. “As for us, we need to establish communication among the JINR youth, broaden knowledge horizons . This wonderful idea will work great if it gets into the usual routine.”

Sergey Gorelikov (VBLHEP), a seminar listener, shared his impressions of the seminar, “I have only heard about the Baikal-GVD project. Today, I have learned many new things about it. Unusual format, young people, questions – everything is so open, the information is given in an understandable form. It is very convenient to ask questions during the report while the slide is in front of you.”

After the seminar, those who wished continued their communication in the café of the JINR Scientists’ Club: pies, sandwiches, coffee, juice, and even a little wine.

Seminars will be weekly held on Thursdays at 4 PM. A senior researcher of the VBLHEP Sector of Particle and Nuclei Structure Research at Extremal Conditions Alexey Aparin will be the next lecturer. AYSS is also going to launch a film club for JINR employees.