2013 US Physics Team Scores Five Medals

Contact: Marilyn Gardner
E-mail: mgardner@aapt.org
Phone: (301) 209-3306

College Park, MD, July 14, 2013—The top US physics students scored three gold medals and two silver medals at the 44th International Physics Olympiad (IPHO), held this year from July 7 - 15 in Copenhagen Denmark where the best high school physics students from 83 countries competed.

China and Korea tied for first place with 5 gold medals, Russia and Singapore earned 4 gold medals and one silver medal, and the USA, Thailand, and Taiwan tied with 3 gold and 2 silver medals. US Team member, Calvin Huang earned the highest score in the experimental portion of the competition.

The participants representing the 2013 US Physics Team were:

  • Jeffrey Cai - Silver, Ridge High School, Basking Ridge, NJ 
  • Calvin Huang - Gold, 8th overall, Gunn High School, Palo Alto, CA
  • ?Jeffrey Yan – Gold, 24th overall, Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto, CA  
  • Samuel Zbarsky - Silver, Montgomery Blair High School, Rockville, MD 
  • Kevin Zhou – Gold, 5th overall, High Technology High School, Lincroft, NJ

?"AAPT is proud to lead the selection process that identifies such exceptional student scholars. Their outstanding performance in this international competition is a reflection of the work of their coaches, the entire 2013 Physics Team, the support of their families, and the best of physics education,” said Dr. Beth A. Cunningham, Executive Officer of the American Association of Physics Teachers.

U.S. Physics Team Selection 
AAPT is responsible for recruiting, selecting and training the U.S. Physics Team each year to compete in the IPHO Competition. This selection process begins in early January when high schools register their students to participate in the Fnet=ma exam. Approximately 300 top scorers on this first test will advance to the Semifinal round of competition.

?A second exam is used as the basis for selection of the 20 members of the U.S. Physics Team.  In May these students traveled from schools all over the United States, to the University of Maryland-College Park for the U.S. Physics Team Training Camp. There, they engaged in nine days of intense studying, mystery lab, daily exams, and problem solving.

At the end of that training camp, five students and an alternate were selected as the "Traveling Team" to represent the United States at the IPhO. In July, the Traveling Team and their coaches attended a three day Mini Camp of intense laboratory work before moving on to the IPhO.

More on the Web
Main website of the U.S. Physics Team: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2013  ?History of the physics team, including past winners: http://www.aapt.org/Contests/olympiad.cfm ?44th International Physics Olympiad:  http://www.ipho2013.dk/

Funding and Sponsorship 
Funding for the U.S. Physics Team is supported through donations from concerned individuals and organizations.  Contributions are entirely used to support the selection, training, and travel of the team.  Donations to the U.S. Physics Team are accepted at www.aapt.org/physicsteam/donate.cfm

The U.S. Physics Olympiad Program is a joint initiative of AAPT in partnership with the University of Maryland Physics Department, the Joint Quantum Institute and the member societies of the American Institute for Physics (AIP): Acoustical Society of America, American Association of Physicists in Medicine, American Astronomical Society, American Crystallographic Society, American Geophysical Union, American Physical Society, AVS, Optical Society America, and the Society of Rheology.

About AAPT
AAPT is the premier national organization and authority on physics and physical science education—with members worldwide. Our mission is to advance the greater good through physics teaching. To this end, AAPT provides our members with numerous opportunities for professional development, communication, and student enrichment.