• Dr.
    • Ivo van Vulpen
    • University of Amsterdam - The Netherlands
    • Particle physics

The melody of nature – the magical world of the very small

The search for the fundamental building blocks that make up our universe is an exciting adventure. Using particle accelerators we have managed to penetrate deeper and deeper into a world that is invisible to the naked eye. In every new layer we uncovered, we discovered new secrets and insights, slowly unravelling the many mysteries of nature. Strange phenomena like quantum mechanics and the theory of relativity have found their way to applications in our society and with the discovery of the Higgs boson at CERN, the European Centre for Particle Physics, the adventure is far from over. There are big questions that the Standard Model of particle physics is unable to answer. What are the underlying mechanisms that define the intriguing patterns we observe in particle properties, what is the nature of dark matter, why does gravity behave so differently from the other forces and, of course, … where does it all come from? These riddles and dreams make that we are still looking for hidden worlds. Deep underground in Switzerland. Adventure!


Ivo van Vulpen (1973) is a particle physicist who works as an associate professor at the University of Amsterdam (UvA). He obtained his PhD at the UvA (2002, promotor Jos Engelen) and after a CERN research fellowship and a post-doc at Nikhef he received a NWO Vidi grant and was appointed as assistant professor at the UvA. His current work is on the measurement of Higgs boson properties, its lifetime in particular. Van Vulpen is also active in science communication. He wrote a popular science book “De melodie van de natuur” (Atlas Contact – 2018 and Yale University Press - 2020) and together with fellow physicist Sense Jan van der Molen and the artists from TEGEN BEELD he is responsible for the so- called Wall Formula’s in the city he lives in: Leiden.

Ivo van Vulpen homepage