Yale Physics Olympics

Outreach description: 

The YPO is an all-day (8:30-4:30) physics competition for Connecticut and surrounding area high school students and teachers. Established in 1998 it has taken place annually every year in mid October on a Saturday. Representing their high school or learning institution, students compete in teams of four to complete a pentathlon of different physics-themed activities. Different every year, they can involve: measuring an unknown quantity, optimizing a process, or constructing a device to perform a function. One event is always a quiz consisting of Fermi Problems, that require combining clever quantitative guesses to produce a good final estimate of some unknown number.

In addition to the five competitive events, there is a make-and-take activity for team coaches, a demonstration show (for all participants) and a talk or presentation by a Yale scientist. At the end of the day, in an awards ceremony, teams are awarded first, second and third prizes for best performance in each event. We also award second and third prizes for overall performance and a trophy for best overall performance. We also give out spirit prizes for best costume/T-shirt and best team name.

This event, located at the physics department is free (and includes lunch) for all participants but is capped at 50 teams (including teachers/coaches). Registration is on a first-come-first-served basis and opens in mid to late August. Registration closes two weeks prior to the event date or once 50 teams have registered. For further information, see the link below.

Outreach contact: