The European Historic Sites heritage

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 L. Cifarelli    23-03-2015     Leggi in PDF

The Historic Sites (HS) Committee was created at the end of 2011 when the HS initiative was started by the EPS (European Physical Society). The HS Committee is mostly composed by EPS Past Presidents! Its current Members are: Alan Chodos (representing the American Physical Society, APS), Luisa Cifarelli (Chair), Martin Huber, Maciek Kolwas, Ove Poulsen, Peter Maria Schuster (EPS History of Physics Group), Fritz Wagner. Observer: Antigone Marino (EPS Young Minds Committee).

Until now, 45 proposals of Historic Sites were received, either spontaneous or channelled through National Member Societies. Let us recall that proposals can be made at any time from the EPS web site. The HS Committee examines the proposals typically three times per year. Out of these, 41 proposals of EPS Historic Sites were accepted and concern the following 19 Countries (one of them outside geographical Europe): Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, India, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom.

19 EPS Historic Sites have been inaugurated so far in 13 different Countries:

1. The Goldfish Fountain of the Physics Institute of Panisperna Street – Fermi Centre, Rome, Italy, 20 April 2012
2. Laboratory "Les Cosmiques", Col du Midi, Chamonix, France, 23 July 2012
3. Hoza 69, Warsaw, Poland, 10 January 2013
4. The Study of Bruno Pontecorvo – JINR, Dubna, Russia, 22 February 2013
5. The Hill of Arcetri, Florence, Italy, 17 May 2013
6. The Villa Griffone in Pontecchio Marconi, Bologna, Italy, 26 May 2013
7. The Observatory of Tycho Brahe, Hven Island, Landskrona, Sweden, 11 September 2013
8. The LAL-LURE Accelerator Complex, Orsay, Paris, France, 13 September 2013
9. PTB, Formerly PTR, The National Metrology Institute, Berlin, Germany, 8 October 2013
10. The Cathedral, Kamien Pomorski, Poland, 11 October 2013
11. The Neutrino Experiment at MTA Atomki, Debrecen, Hungary, 25 October 2013
12. The Niels Bohr Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark, 3 December 2013
13. The AdA Storage Ring at the INFN Frascati National Laboratory, Frascati, Rome, Italy, 5 December 2013
14. The European Birthplace of the Atomic Timekeeping – NPL, Teddington, UK, 31 January 2014
15. The Blackett Laboratory, London, UK, 30 April 2014
16. The Fabra Observatory, Barcelona, Spain, 9 May 2014
17. The Study of Georgi Nadjakov, Sofia, Bulgaria, 23 May 2014
18. The Synchro-Cyclotron, SC – CERN, Geneva, Switzerland, 19 June 2014
19.  The Kamerlingh Onnes Laboratory and Lorentz Institute, Leiden, The Netherlands, 9 February 2015.

Already scheduled inaugurations in 2015, in 8 different countries (3 of which other than the above), are the following:

– The Milan Milankovic Climate Research Centre, Belgrade, Serbia (already declared on 3 October 2014, inauguration date t.b.d.)
– The Hungarian Lutheran Church, Budapest, Hungary (23 April 2015)
– The Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich, Germany (6 May 2015)
– The Institute for Radium Research, Vienna, Austria (28 May 2015)
– The Mount Vesuvius Observatory, Hercolaneum, Naples, Italy (Spring-Summer 2015)
– The Students Residence, Madrid, Spain (Spring-Summer 2015)
– The Einstein House, Bern, Switzerland, as Joint APS-EPS Historic Site (September 2015)
– The Hotel Métropole, Brussels, Belgium (October 2015).

For each inauguration event, a plaque is unveiled in the presence of the local representatives and authorities. The EPS President or his representative (Past President or Member of the EPS Executive Committee or Member of the EPS HS Committee) attends the ceremony. For each ceremony, a news is published right away in the electronic newsletter e-EPS and on the EPS web site, and an extended article in published afterwards in EPN.

So far, this initiative has been a series of success stories: while stamping significant places for the history and the progress of physics, it provides visibility to physics and to the physics community and, at the same time, enhances some spirit of belonging to the EPS. Moreover, thanks to the EPS Historic Sites, a European "scientific cultural heritage" is building up.