Success: the ENS de Lyon team wins the International Physicists’ Tournament 2023

Congratulations to the physics students of ENS de Lyon and their coaches for this wonderful victory.

Remember their names and faces: Mathis Chevé, Rémy Dolbeault, Yannis Kefaloucos, Amaury Marchon, Till Person, Max Riedinger and their three coaches, Nicolas Plihon, Hugo Roussille and Nicolas Taberlet, have won, equally placed with Poland, the 2023 edition of the International Physicists’ Tournament!.

After 3 battles between the Polish team, the Russian team and the ENS de Lyon team - who took it in turns to be the presenter, critic and referee - the ENS de Lyon team and the Polish team obtained the same number of points and won the competition together. A first in the history of the Tournament.
Our students had already finished second at the 10th edition of the French Physicists’ Tournament, after having prepared the 9 set subjects over 6 months. Once selected for the IPT, the challenge was even greater. It was not just a question of focusing on the 9 subjects prepared for the FTP but also the team had to deal with the 8 additional subjects set by the jury of the international competition. In just 2 months! Suffice to say that the students made every effort for this tournament! To get everything ready on time, they stayed up late at night, they worked on weekends, they worked with each other outside of class... In a nutshell, they put all their time and energy into it. If preparing the FPT can be considered as an interesting and intellectually stimulating way to validate the M1 module of experimental physics and obtain additional credits as part of the ENS de Lyon diploma, the team had already fulfilled the contract just by participating in the FTP. The IPT could be seen as a bonus! A bonus that pushed working time, stress, and challenges to the extreme, ... but which also united the teams and presented exciting challenges and wonderful encounters, in pleasant working conditions.

A great adventure, therefore, a real challenge for the students, but also for the coaches who, year after year, also work on the set topics to try to guide the students and evaluate their work as best as possible. These coaches have highlighted the importance of having clear time slots, credits and teachers who supervise the competitors as part of their service, and who would like to thank ENS de Lyon and the Physics Department for the flexibility of the organization dedicated to the preparation of the tournaments.
Our students are talented! Hats off to the team who represented ENS de Lyon to the highest standard, as well as to the coaches who supervised and supported them. Congratulations to you all on this victory. And above all, thank you.

The organization of the tournament
The competition is organized as follows: during 45-minute battles, 3 teams of 6 students supervised by teachers or researchers compete on physics problems that they have worked during the academic year. One of the teams is the "Reporter" who defends the analysis of the problem given by the "Opponent" team. This raises the relevant points but also the weaknesses of the proposed solution. A discussion, sometimes lively, and often of high scientific caliber then begins between the two teams. The third team, known as the "Reviewer" summarizes and judges the relevance of the discussion. Finally, a jury of senior scientists gives scores to each team. Then the roles are reversed.

Previous rankings of the ENS de Lyon physics team at IPT:
  • 2nd in 2019
  • 4th in 2017
  • 1st in 2016



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