Open Cosmics: cosmic-ray physics for everyone
Simple devices like Cloud Chambers, Bubble Chambers, CosmicPi and Crayfis allow us to detect particle decays from cosmic rays which are not visible to the naked eye. Cloud Chambers and Bubble Chambers were used for particle physics research at CERN before the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).
During CERN Webfest we built a basic framework for a distributed network of these devices and we plan to eventually develop a complete grid. This may be used to analyse data, examine results and disseminate it to the public, making it accessible for non-physicists, students, and hobbyists to learn about the cosmos around them. Integrating this project with crowdcrafting allows the public to be involved in identifying the different particle tracks, whilst teaching them about cosmic rays in the process.
This cosmic data will help find answers to a broad spectrum of questions related to cloud formation, global warming, renewable energy and the universe. Moreover, a recent idea proposed by a group of scientists at the Czech Academy of Sciences who measure cosmic rays on board of spacecrafts, are interested in a public database similar to the one we are proposing.