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“The Origin of Particle Physics in Spain,” by Jorge Velasco

“The Origin of Particle Physics in Spain,” by Jorge Velasco

Science at Ateneo

“Valencia and the Origins of Experimental Nuclear Physics and Particle Physics in Spain (1950-1970): Joaquín Catala and the Institute of Particle Physics”, By Jorge Velasco (IFIC, CSIC-UV).

Experimental nuclear physics and particle physics were introduced to Spain by Professor Joaquín Catala, who established a research group in this discipline at the University of Valencia in 1950.

Catala returned to his chair in Valencia after working, thanks to a CSIC grant, for a year in Professor Powell's group in Bristol (UK), and in the same year 1950 he received the Nobel Prize in Physics for the development of this technique. Photographic emulsions and the discovery of mesons with them in cosmic radiation.

Jorge Velasco Gonzalez He is a researcher at the Superior Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) at the Institute of Particle Physics (IFIC), a joint center between CSIC and the University of Valencia. He obtained a degree in Physical Sciences from the Autonomous University of Madrid in Fundamental Physics (1976). He obtained his third cycle doctorate in theoretical physics from the University of Paris Diderot (1980). CERN Fellow (1980-1983) and Doctorate in Physical Sciences from the University of Valencia (1984). He is also a founding member of the Department of Atomic, Molecular and Nuclear Physics at the University of Valencia (1987). He was Director of IFIC (1991-1999) and Institutional Coordinator of CSIC before the EU institutions (Council, Parliament and Commission) in Brussels (2003-2019). During his scientific career he studied the validity of the standard theory of elementary particles in the WA-47, UA4, DELPHI, UA4/2, ATLAS-TOTEM experiments at CERN accelerators (SpS, SppS, LEP, LHC).

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Since 2013, the Ateneo de Santander and the Cantabrian Institute of Physics (UC-CSIC) have maintained a fruitful collaboration to bring science closer to the Cantabrian community, joined in this cycle by the Science Chapter of the University of Cantabria. In a rigorous manner, but with a kind heart and information, presentations are made every year on different aspects of current affairs from a scientific perspective. In these presentations, the importance of the latest research is evident when viewed from a historical perspective, resulting in a panorama spanning the past, present and future of the essential role science plays in our daily lives.