Institute of Physics, Polish Academy of Sciences (Warsaw - Poland), announces The Seventeenth International Competition


  This is an International Competition in Physics Research Projects for High School (Lyceum) Students. The competition targets high school (lyceum) students who are interested in physics and are willing to perform their own research works in physics. At times, their results are very interesting and valuable. The Institute of Physics (in the Polish Academy of Sciences) organises the seventeenth competition in the 2008/2009 academic year, and invites the participation of students based on the rules given below. The title of the competition expresses dreams of all the physicists, especially of young physicists. We, however, feel necessary to underline that the FIRST STEP is a quite independent competition, without any links to any Nobel institution.


1.  All the high school (lyceum) students regardless of the country, type of the school etc. are eligible for the competition. The only conditions are that the school cannot be considered as a university college and the age of the participant should not exceed 20 years on March 31, 2009.

2.  There are no restrictions concerning the subject matter of the papers, their level, methods applied etc. All these are left to the participants' choice. The papers, however, have to have a research character and deal with physics topics or topics directly related to physics.

3.  Every participant can submit one or more papers but each paper should have only one author. The total volume (i.e. text + figures + captions + tables + references) of each paper should not exceed 25 normal typed pages (about 50,000 characters). The papers have to be written in English.

4.  The papers will be refereed by the Organising Committee and the best will be awarded. The number of awarded papers is not limited. All the awards will be considered equivalent. The Authors of the awarded papers will be invited to the Institute of Physics (or to institutions co-operating with the Institute of Physics) for one month's research stay (the stays are scheduled for November 2009). The necessary stay expenses (without expenses for travel) will be paid by the organisers. Unfortunately, the travel expenses to and from Poland cannot be paid by the organisers and the winners will have to find some sponsors.

5.  In addition to the regular awards the Organising Committee may establish a number of honourable mentions. The participants who won the honourable mention receive diplomas, but they are not invited to the research stay.

6.  The deadline for submission of papers is March 31, 2009.
The preferred form of submission is on line submission by using the system available at our web page, where details can also be found.
Alternatively participants can send two hard copies of their papers by ordinary mail to: Dr. Ryszard \.Zuberek, Secretary of the FIRST STEP, Institute of Physics, Polish Academy of Sciences, al. Lotników 32/46, 02-668 Warszawa
Please use only one method of submission.
The Organizing Committee does not accept papers sent by e-mail.

7.  Each paper submitted by traditional mail should be attached with the filled Participation Form (empty form is available from our home page: .

8.  IMPORTANT: The papers that do not conform to the above mentioned formal conditions are not evaluated. In particular that refers to the following papers:

We hope that our competition will provide the pupils with an opportunity to compare their own achievements with the achievements of their colleagues from other countries. Also we hope that the stay of young scientists in our Institute will result in friendly relationship among them, what seems especially valuable for the future.

On behalf of the Organising Committee:
Prof. Yohanes Surya
(Jakarta, Indonesia)
Vice-President of the Organising Committee
Prof. dr hab. Henryk Szymczak
(Warsaw, Poland)
President of the Organising Committee


Additional information on the competition and on the proceedings of the past competitions can be obtained from Dr. Ryszard \.Zuberek - phone: (48)22-8435212; fax: (48)22-8430926; e-mail: or from Prof. Dr. Yohanes Surya - e-mail: or from any of the following Members of the International Advisory Committee (IAC):

Mr. Can ALTINELLER (also Turkish)
Mrs. Tildash BITUOVA (also Kazakh)
Prof. Dr. Hiroshi EZAWA (also Japanese)
Dr. Zbigniew GORTEL 
Prof. Dr. Ibrahim GUNAL (also Turkish)
Dr. Avi I. HAUSER 
Prof. Dr. Si-zhao JIN (also Chinese)
Dr. Hans JORDENS (also Dutch)
Dr. Andrzej KOTLICKI 
Prof. Dr. Stanislav KOZEL (also Russian)
Dr. Juan LEON (also Spanish)
Prof. Dr. Ming-Juey LIN (also Chinese)
Prof. Dr. Leonid MARKOVICH (also Belorussian)
Prof. Helmuth MAYR (also German)
Mr. Markus MUELLER (also German and French)
Prof. Dr. Shigetoshi NARA (also Japanese)
Prof. Dr. Viktor URUMOV (also Macedonian)
Mr. Srdan VERBIC (also Serbian)
Prof. Dr. Paolo VIOLINO (also Italian)
Prof. Dr. Ivo VOLF (also Czech)
Prof. Dr. Arthur K. WEST 
Mr. Zhang Zhong-da (also Chinese)

The competition papers MUST be written in English, but to get an information about the competition the participants may contact the Members of the IAC also in other languages as shown in parentheses. Please remember that the Members of the IAC are not supervisors and they do not help in any concrete participants' research.

Complete information on the First Step can be found on our home page