“Jugend-forscht” winners at HZB (Update)

The two winners of the Berlin competition Jugend-forscht came to HZB to conduct further experiments. The national competition starts on 18 May.

The two winners of the Berlin competition Jugend-forscht came to HZB to conduct further experiments. The national competition starts on 18 May. © HZB | S. Zerbe

The two homemade experiments: Does the apparent weight of pyrolytic graphite change due to repulsion by a magnet (photo left)? And what happens when you cool it with liquid nitrogen? (Photo right)

The two homemade experiments: Does the apparent weight of pyrolytic graphite change due to repulsion by a magnet (photo left)? And what happens when you cool it with liquid nitrogen? (Photo right) © HZB | S. Zerbe

Charlotte Klar and Katharina Austermann (both 18) have already come a long way: With their experiments on pyrolytic graphite, they are trying to solve a puzzle they found in the technical literature on diamagnetism. With their work, they convinced both the Jugend-forscht-Jury at the Berlin South Regional Competition and the Berlin Competition. Now, they will join the national competition which will take place from 18 to 21 May in Bremen.

Update: Charlotte Klar and Katharina Austermann (both 18 years old) from Humboldt-Gymnasium in Berlin-Tegel were awarded the Chancellor's Prize for the most original work at the Stiftung Jugend forscht e. V. national competition.

Our warmest congratulations to Charlotte and Katharina.

But before that, they paid a visit to the Helmholtz Centre Berlin. Their special prize was an experiment day in the school laboratory, which the students were determined to redeem before the final. The reason: Here at the HZB they were able to carry out a few experiments for which they needed liquid nitrogen - which is not available at school. They were also able to discuss the physical background to their experimental observations with Ralf Feyerherm from the CoreLab Quantum Materials.

With their experiments, the students are investigating the question of whether the magnetisability of pyrolytic graphite (a diamagnetic substance) is temperature-dependent. School books say no, but in their experiments they found a clear effect. How can this be explained and demonstrated as clearly as possible? The two are now trying to answer this question in their research project.

The students are currently in the middle of their exams, the Jugend-forscht competition comes "on top", so to speak.  Nevertheless, it is a dream come true for them, because they have been working on various phenomena of magnetism for no less than eight years. They have already taken part in several youth research competitions. But they have never got this far. Our fingers are firmly crossed for Charlotte Klar and Katharina Austermann!

(sz)


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