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To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of Enrico Fermi, the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory invite high school students in the United States and Italy to develop a Web site about the great scientist’s life, work, and contributions to physics. The submitted Web sites will be judged, and prizes will be given to the top three entries in English and Italian.

Enrico Fermi, winner of the 1938 Nobel Prize in physics, is known to the public primarily for his role in producing the first controlled nuclear-chain reaction at the University of Chicago during the Manhattan Project in 1942. But he also made major contributions to the statistics of electron gas, the statistical model of the atom itself, to the understanding of radioactivity, and influenced a whole new generation of physicists. Special events to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Fermi’s birth will be held in Rome and Pisa, Italy, as well as the University of Chicago, Columbia University in New York City, and at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Ill. The U.S. Postal Service, meanwhile, will issue a stamp in Fermi’s honor.

The Web site contest is open to all sophomores, juniors and seniors who are attending U.S. or Italian high schools in the 2001-2002 academic year. Web sites may be created in English or in Italian. Eligible entries must be submitted before Dec. 1, 2001.

Rules and Guidelines

  • The Web page should include information about the life and accomplishments of Enrico Fermi, as well as educate visitors about physics concepts and theories.
  • All embedded graphics must be in JPEG or GIF format. Contestants may use, but are not limited to, any of the graphic elements included on this contest page.
  • The Web page cannot contain inappropriate content, commercial logos, or endorsements.
  • Each entrant or team of entrants may submit only one entry.
  • No person may be a member of more than one entrant team.
  • The Web pages will be accessible for viewing on the Internet and the visitors will be able to vote for their favorite.
  • A panel of judges will select the winning entries based on historical and scientific content, clarity of expression, visitor reaction, technical design and creativity. Judges will be especially interested in content that goes beyond Fermi’s contributions to the development of atomic power, including his work in Italy before 1938 and his work at Chicago from 1946 to 1954.
  • Cash awards will be given directly to the individuals or teams that submit the winning entries.
  • The pages must be sent to the Enrico Fermi Web Site Contest ( at Argonne National Laboratory, Division of Educational Programs-Bldg. 223, 9700 S. Cass Ave., Argonne, IL 60439-4545.
  • Submissions may be sent via e-mail, floppy disk, zip disk or CD and should include the name of the sponsoring teacher and the school's name, address and telephone number.
  • Questions should be sent to


Certificates and cash prizes will be awarded to the top three entries:

$700 First Prize

$200 Second Prize

$100 Third Prize


A selection of Enrico Fermi photos and sound files is available at the following address for student use : All files used should include the appropriate credit information.