The European Organization for Nuclear Research, also known as CERN, will be opening its doors to the general public on 14 and 15 September for its Open Days. At the two-day event, the general populace will be able to partake in over 150 activities planned by the laboratory across nine of its locations.
CERN will be utilizing the Open Days to give the citizens a hands-on experience with the kind of work the researchers and scientists at the organization indulge in. From operating a mini particle accelerator to exploring the medical applications of the research being done at CERN to interacting with scientists and researchers working on finding the answers to the open questions of today.
The Director-General at CERN, Fabiola Gianotti, hopes that the Open Days will be an opportunity to share the organization's zeal for science:
We look forward to welcoming our neighbours, as well as visitors from further afield, to the Open Days, where they will discover the fascinating research we do at CERN and the instruments we use. We are glad to have the opportunity to share with the public our passion for science and the impact of the technologies we develop. Visitors will be welcomed and guided by scientists from all over the world and other CERN personnel.
The CERN accelerator complex is currently shut down, which means that all experiments run by the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world's most powerful particle accelerator yet, are at a two-year-long hiatus. Following upgrades and maintenance, the particle accelerator is set to be functional in 2021 again. Usually, CERN synchronizes this downtime with its Open Days. Indeed, when the particle accelerator shut down six years back on February 2013, CERN held its first Open Days on September 28 and 29 in the same year.
On both days, that is September 14 and 15, the event will commence for the visitors at 09:00 AM (12 AM PDT) and end at 06:00 PM local time (9AM PDT). CERN says that it is expecting north of 40,000 visitors each day. For visiting the event, CERN has advised using public transport or carpooling due to parking and driving restrictions on site.