APS News

U.S. Physics Olympiad Team Returns With Gold and Silver

In a four-way tie for second place overall, the United States Physics Olympiad team won four gold medals and one silver medal at the International Physics Olympiad in Mumbai.

July 14, 2015  |  David Voss

US Physics Olympiad Team showing gold and silver medals
Photo: Paul Stanley

The 2015 U.S. Physics Olympiad traveling team brings home gold and silver medals: (l to r) Kevin Li, Saranesh Prembabu, Zachary Bogorad, Jason Lu, and Adam Busis.

Three other countries — Russia, Taiwan, and South Korea — also won four gold and one silver medal, while China took home first place with five gold medals.

At the Olympiad, top high school physics students from around the world face a challenging battery of tests: a five-hour theory exam and a five-hour experimental exam. The theory questions ranged from the physics of neutrinos and photons emitted from the Sun, to the engineering design of a nuclear reactor. The experimental challenge involved measurements of complex optical diffraction patterns and obtaining the properties of water by studying diffraction of surface waves.

U.S. team members Zachary Bogorad (Solon High School, Ohio), Adam Busis (Montgomery Blair High School, Maryland), Saranesh Prembabu (Dougherty Valley High School, California), and Kevin Li (West Windsor-Plainsboro High School, New Jersey) won gold medals and Jason Lu (Adlai Stevenson High School, Illinois) returned with a silver medal. The team was led by Paul Stanley of Beloit College and David Fallest of North Carolina State University.

Taehyoung Kim of South Korea had the top score in theory and was the overall individual winner of the Olympiad. Sol Kim of South Korea garnered the top experimental score, and gold medal winner Thao Thi Huong Dinh of Vietnam, was recognized as the top female participant.

The U.S. Physics Olympiad program was started by the American Association of Physics Teachers and is co-sponsored by the American Physical Society.

Related Information

Gray Arrow United States Traveling Team Selected, APS News, July 2015
Gray Arrow 2015 U.S. Physics Team, AAPT website, May 2015
Gray Arrow Welcome to IPhO 2015, 46th International Physics Olympiad 2015 website