A Symposium on the Nature of Science
HOW DO WE KNOW?Janet Conrad and Len Bugel
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If you can't see it, how do we know it is there? Neutrinos are fundamental particles with masses too small to measure. Because they are neutral they are not "visible" in detectors, which rely on response to electric charge. The neutrino studies at Fermilab demonstrate how science is a process of fitting the pieces together, not just a collection of facts. How can we communicate this to high school students? We will use the theme of cosmic rays to introduce several ideas of 20th century physics to a high school class.
Stratton Mountain School
Len Bugel was born in Hudson, NY in 1943, educated at the University of Massachusetts with a BS and MS in mechanical engineering. He spent five years in industry (GE) then moved to Vermont to help found Stratton Mountain School, where he has been teaching math and science ever since. He joined NuTeV as a TRAC teacher in '94 and became the first Fermilab Teacher Fellow, spending a sabbatical year in '95-'96. He is active in New England Science Teachers and the American Association of Physics Teachers. Len won the Olmstead Prize for Excellence in Secondary School Teaching (Williams College) in '99.
Department of Physics
Janet Conrad did her undergraduate studies at Swarthmore College and graduate work at Oxford University and Harvard University. She is now an associate professor in High Energy Physics at Columbia University in New York and a Visiting Scientist in Beams Division at Fermilab. Janet has been active in neutrino physics since graduating in 1993. She is presently the co-spokesman of the Booster Neutrino Experiment (BooNE) which will take data in late 2001.
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