Brazil wins second place in International Physics Competition

Unicamp team Quantum Coaches finished second at the International Physics Championships (Photo: Disclosure / Matheus Azevedo)

In their fourth participation in the International Physicists’ Championship (IPT, acronym), Brazil achieved their best result to date: reaching the podium in second place in the 2021 competition, which ended in early July. Based at the University of Warsaw, Poland, but hosted remotely due to the pandemic, the event brought together 12 countries and the grand final was contested between university students from Brazil, Russia and Ukraine. Russia got the best result and Ukraine came third.

Brazil’s performance was enthusiastically celebrated by hosting the Brasileiro dos Físicos tournament (or BPT, which stands for Brazilian Physicists Championship), which serves as the national selection to determine the Brazilian representative at the IPT. “We, as a committee, are very excited with the result, especially since in four participations – 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2021 – Brazil has already reached two finals – 2018 and 2021”, said Mateos Azevedo. , member of the committee. From BPT, GALILEO.

In 2021, the responsibility fell to the team of the State University of Campinas (UNICamp), formed by Captain Felipe Mazzi, Maria Carolina Volpato, Leonardo Falabella, Anderson Volto, Ana Elisa Barrioni and Joao Pedro Minchillo led by Professors Leandro Tesler and Pierre-Louis Assise. It was Unicamp’s first participation in an international tournament.

And they did their job very well: they repeated the feat of 2018 by reaching the final and overtaking the place of this edition, the team of the Federal University of ABC (UFABC) obtaining the bronze for Brazil. . “This achievement is a reward for years of dedication and hard work on the part of the group of students from various courses who believed in the idea and mobilized in intense preparation,” said Leandro Tesler, Head of the Unicamp team, in the declaration.

Created in 2009 in Ukraine, the International Physics Championship consists of a competition between students – students and masters – who seek solutions to physical problems little understood by the scientific community. One team presents a solution opposed by another, and finally a third group reviews the discussion and tries to piece together the arguments of both parties.

In this edition of the IPT, for example, one issue that was raised was the bending motion that spaghetti acquires when placed in water. Participants were encouraged to study shape dynamics and respond to whether this phenomenon was present in other blocks, such as linguine, pattini, and even lasagna. The 16 other questions formulated by the organization are available on The site is IP.

Forecast for the coming years

With a second place in 2021, the hope of the Brazilian physical championship is to diversify the national selectivity in order to increase the competitive scope of the country in the next international competitions. “So far we have only had official participation in the BPT from teams from the south-east, more specifically from São Paulo, but we know the potential of Brazil,” said Azevedo.

At a time when science is valued more and more, such tournaments are becoming more and more important. “We really believe in the potential that this competition should offer to train full-fledged scientists, since it is not only theoretical decisions, but experimental constructions, teamwork and scientific communication in themselves”, continues Brazilian, master’s student at McGill University, in Canada.

He invites all students, not just in Physics, but in Engineering, Mathematics and anyone interested in other courses: “The 4th edition of the BPT will take place this year or next year, online, and everyone is invited to participate! Form a team in your university (public, private or technical education) and take part in the competition. To contact the National Committee, simply send an email to [email protected]

* Supervised by Larissa Lopez.

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