Atom-Smashing Fun: Visit RHIC on Aug. 4

Tour the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider, where physicists recreate the conditions of the early universe

Every year, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory opens its gates to thousands of community members for its annual open house events, called Summer Sundays. Visitors get to meet the Lab’s scientists and tour a different world-class science facility each week, including the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider, the National Synchrotron Light Source II, and the Center for Functional Nanomaterials. Exciting science shows and hands-on educational activities are also available for the whole family, and it’s all for free!

This summer, Brookhaven Lab is open on Sundays July 14 through August 4. This Sunday will be the summer’s final event: Atom-Smashing Fun.

Come tour the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), where physicists study what the universe may have looked like in the first few moments after the Big Bang! See the house-sized STAR detector and walk into the underground accelerator tunnel.

Atom-Smashing Fun: Visit RHIC on Aug. 4

MHighlights from past Atom-Smashing Fun events.

The RHIC tour is appropriate for ages 10 and up, but younger visitors can participate in hands-on science fun at our electricity and magnetism demonstrations. Find out how electricity and magnetism make the accelerators at RHIC work, and see a magnet defy gravity!

This week’s science show is Mr. Fish’s Phenomenal Physics show. Watch a renowned circus performer present astounding tricks that have scientific explanations. Brookhaven physicist and Associate Lab Director for Nuclear & Particle Physics Berndt Mueller will also give a talk on the incredible science of RHIC. He’ll discuss how RHIC is different from other colliders and what our experiments with it have uncovered about the universe.

Reservations are not required, but visitors 16 and older must bring a photo ID. Visitors should check in at Berkner Hall and may arrive any time between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Arrive by 2:30 p.m. for the last tour of RHIC. Mr. Fish’s Phenomenal Physics show will be held at noon, 1:30 p.m., and 3 p.m. in Berkner Hall. A cafeteria and gift shop, also located in Berkner Hall, will be open until 3 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., respectively.

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit

Follow @BrookhavenLab on Twitter or find us on Facebook.

2019-14478  |  INT/EXT  |  Newsroom