background image

Blahoslav Rataj

Our scholarship holder 2017 – 2019


Imperial College London

Field of study



My first visit to CERN in Geneva while still at high school sparked my interest in the issues of contemporary particle physics, in particular the matter/antimatter asymmetry, generation of dark matter in particle accelerators, and Higgs boson research. My teachers at the secondary engineering school further nourished my enthusiasm, enabling me to learn about the possibilities for the use of nanotechnologies, fusion reactors and Hadron therapy through field trips and lectures. I would program an application using graph algorithms, construct logic combination circuits and study the issues of current pedagogy in my yearly projects. Most of all, I appreciate my internship at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering where I implemented and then explored neuron networks for determining people’s age and ethnicity. Taking cue from graduates’ lectures, I decided to apply for Imperial College London because I believe this school offers high quality education in my field of choice. My hiking trips to the mountains in the Nordics may have given me some courage, though my mother’s encouragement is likely what helped me most in attaining my desired goal.

Financing my first year was not easy. Happily, I won the Georg Placzek Scholarship on the basis of my paper on the evaluation of particle collision in the Atlas detector, which boosted my courage for my academic pursuits. Initially, studying was difficult for me, focused on analytical thinking skills. At the same time, lab work gave me fulfillment, in particular when I was working on projects simulating particle detectors and seeking exotic particles after Higgs boson decay, which could be identified as dark matter constituents in the future. I continue focusing on this matter. I should also mention my involvement in dancing competitions. I have become a member of Imperial College’s ballroom dancing team and I keep honing my Latin and Standard dancing skills. I won an internship at Mkodo in London, exploring the Bluetooth technology and its potential in use for localization in closed spaces. Last but not least, I am preparing for my practical teaching assignment in my second year when I will have the opportunity to become a physics teacher and try to intrigue my students. I am preparing musical, theatrical and many other activities to make my teaching more fun.

Secondary School:  

Smíchov Secondary Engineering School [SSPŠ], Information Technology, 2012-2016


Imperial College London, Physics, beginning 2016



Complete my second year with good results so that I can proceed to the one-year Master’s program at the Imperial College. Explore the decay of the Higgs boson into exotic particles. Take part in the dancing competitions in Nottingham and Blackpool again. Organize a trip to the Syöte National Park in Finland.


I am taking primarily physics and mathematics in England. I also spend a lot of effort practicing Latin and Standard dances as a member of the University’s dancing team. Sometimes I go dancing salsa and kizomba to lift up my spirits. I really love mountain hiking in the forgotten and forsaken areas of the Nordics. I play many outdoor sports in my free time – most often jogging and canoeing. I am interested in philosophy of the 20th century; it fascinates me, phenomenology most of all.

My articles and what has been written about me

All articles