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Ortvay Seminar

This class has been originally initiated by Merse Előd Gáspár and myself in the excitement after our outstanding results in 2001 of the International Ortvay Competition in Physics. This competition is organized by Hungary each year (traditionally around early-November) and is open to undergraduate and graduate students world-wide. The competition lasts for one week and provides a variety of intriguing theoretical problems in practically every field in physics. I will never forget the euphoria after the competition: you feel to have arisen above the walls of your limitations to a level at which a perfect overview opens up, over the totality of physics. This feeling lasts for a few weeks afterwards, it helps greatly to increase your self-confidence in problemsolving. The Ortvay Seminar was initiated to keep on the excitement throughout the year. It is devoted to solving and discussing the most memorable problems of the history of the competition.

The Ortvay Seminar was first held in the Spring semester of 2001 at Eötvös University. After the initiation of Attila Guld (freshman) it is now continued in 2006. This year 3 faculty members (Gyula Dávid, József Cserti, Péter Gnadig), and 4 graduate students (Merse E. Gáspár, Győző Egri, Márton Kormos and myself) are interested in regularly participating and hosting the seminar. The undergraduate students are asked to hand in the detailed solution of at least one problem in TEX. We are planning to publish a book once a sufficient number of solutions are available.


A complete set of problems is available at the official Ortvay website. The problems we plan to discuss are sent out each week by Merse Gáspár in email to the students and faculty interested in the seminar, and I am putting these problems here. It would be nice to publish the solutions electronically after the classes as well. Please make your suggestions on which problems to discuss to me.

Related Links

Check out my original solutions as a participant here.

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