Graduating Mechanical Engineering Students Reflect on their Experience at CERN

Published on 26 June 2020

Graduation looks a bit different this year, but we still want to celebrate the achievements of our graduates. We spoke to Ryan Mochar about his experience at CERN, the world’s largest science experimen

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The University of Dundee is part of the CMS Collaboration at CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research.

Our involvement is based around expertise in materials engineering, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, and computing. This means our students not only benefit from learning from these expertise but, some also have an opportunity to visit.

I was given the list of honours projects at the end of my third year. I was looking for a project that had the potential to be used in industry and the CERN project gave me the opportunity to do just that.

Ryan Mochar

“The project involved detecting signs of failure in cooling fans in order to predict when maintenance would be required. I had a contact at CERN who provided me with a background to the problem and they also were there to answer any questions I had.”

“Part of my project included a visit to the CERN site in Geneva. I was fortunate enough to see the CMS detector when it was separated for maintenance, a sight that few outsiders get to see in the flesh, and it was even more impressive than I had imagined.”

Professor Robert Keatch, Head of Engineering at the School of Science and Engineering, has been coordinating projects for undergraduate students in partnership with CMS since the collaboration started in 2018.

“It really is a unique opportunity for engineers to visit CERN. While particle physics lies at the heart of CERN’s activities, it is also one of the word’s leading centres of innovation in engineering, materials science, computing and data capture. I am delighted that Dundee is able to help drive forward that innovation, and our students can benefit too.” ”

Professor Robert Keatch

The University of Dundee is engaged with CERN on a number of other projects, notably through work led by Professor Amin Abdolvand, Chair of Functional Materials & Photonics.

The development of new processes and technologies could impact on the next major upgrade of the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, the so-called High-Luminosity Large Hadron Collider, which aims to increase the potential for discoveries after 2025, unlocking more of science’s greatest mysteries going back to the ‘Big Bang.’

Interested in Mechanical Engineering? Have a look at our course page.


Gina Adams

Marketing and Communications Officer

+44 (0)1382 385997


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