POSTED 10:45am May 6, 2019

Media release: Teenage Olympians go for gold at the Asian Physics Olympiad

Australia to host Asia’s toughest physics competition for the first time

170 physics whizz kids from 23 countries at Adelaide Convention Centre on 6 May 2019

Eight of Australia’s top performing student physicists will compete against 170 of Asia’s smartest kids representing 22 countries and regions at the Asian Physics Olympiad to be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre from 6 to 12 May.

The Australian Year 11 and 12 students are from Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Canberra and Sutton, NSW. They will compete in theoretical and experimental exams that draw on first-year university physics, and will try to win gold for Australia. The students have spent a year in exams and intensive training to make the cut, outperforming more than 1,700 other students who sat the qualifying exam.

“For me to represent Australia at the Asian Physics Olympiad is a dream come true. I am here because of my brilliant science teachers who encouraged me to have a go,” says team member Rosemary Zielinski from Merici College in Canberra.

“These young science champions deserve our support because their talent will help drive the deep science and technologies on which our future prosperity in Australia and the region will depend,” says Professor Caroline McMillen, Chief Scientist for South Australia.

The Asian Physics Olympiad is Asia’s toughest physics competition for high school students.

“Hosting this competition in Australia for the first time provides an important opportunity to champion our young science talent, as well as shine a spotlight on Australian science education and Australian physics,” says Ruth Carr, Executive Director of official organiser, Australian Science Innovations.

Competitors will sit the theoretical exam on 7 May, followed by the experimental exam on 9 May. The exams are marked twice and moderated by each participating country’s team leaders before the final marks are decided. Participants will receive medals and awards based on their exam scores at the closing ceremony on 12 May.

The week-long Asian Physics Olympiad program also includes a range of cultural and educational activities, including a quantum computing presentation by 2018 Australian of Year Professor Michelle Simmons, visits to local schools and universities, and an introduction to Australian Rules Football.

The 20th Asian Physics Olympiad is brought to Australia by Australian Science Innovations and is funded by the Federal Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.

Asian Physics Olympiad
5-13 May 2019, Adelaide, Australia


Stephen CatsamasYear 12Marcellin CollegeVIC
Benjamin Davison-PetchYear 12Christ Church GrammarWA
Min-Je HwangYear 12James Ruse Agricultural CollegeNSW
Alexander LinYear 11The King’s SchoolNSW
Jessie LumYear 12Pymble Ladies’ CollegeNSW
William SutherlandYear 12Scotch CollegeVIC
Simon YungYear 12Narrabundah CollegeACT
Rosemary ZielinskiYear 12Merici CollegeACT


Find out more about the Australian team in this video here.

Australian Science Innovations
Department of Industry, Innovation and Science The University of Adelaide Flinders University University of South Australia

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