Outreach, Education and Communication Initiatives at the Pierre Auger Observatory
November 29, 2022
The Pierre Auger Observatory in Argentina, built to study the physics of highest-energy cosmic rays, has a tremendous emotional appeal given the Pampa Amarilla environment at 1400 m asl in Mendoza, coupled with the aura of a pioneering experiment that explores the Universe. Here, we present some of the Outreach, Education, and Communication programmes carried out within the international collaboration. Since early times the Observatory has been communicating its existence and purpose through the Visitor Center, where guided tours with supporting presentations are frequently offered to make the experiment, astroparticle physics, and scientific research, in general, accessible to the public. The limitation of the on-site access by the ongoing pandemic fuelled the development of virtual tours and enlarged the number of international communication to the public. The use of high-school students' specific programs has been one of the elements of the Observatory upgrade. A part of the detectors used in the upgrade has been built in cooperation with students, setting the basis for a proficient citizen science program. A fraction of the data processed from the collaboration is made available to the public in a usable format. The collaboration developed special masterclasses, providing the resources to analyse the public data set together with special training sessions at teachers' or students' level. Finally, a glance at the worldwide inspirational activities, based on the mentioned emotional appeal of the Observatory and conducted by the International Collaboration members, will be given.
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