Science OlympiaNZ


NZYPT New Zealand Young Physicist's Tournament

Who We Are:

The International Young Physicists’ Tournament (IYPT) is a competition created in the USSR to foster scientific research and improved international communication in Physics. It is an annual team competition for high school physics students.

The IYPT is now a major international competition with competitions open to high school physics students in each of the competing nations. Countries currently represented at IYPT come from six continents.

Each country is represented by a national team consisting of five students. In the August prior to the competition seventeen complex problems are released for the team to theoretically and experimentally research. At the competition the teams present and defend the validity of their solutions against teams from other countries in “Physics Fights”. Juries consisting of respected physicists and physics teachers rate their reports and the discussion that those reports generate.

New Zealand has had a competing team in the world competition since 2003.

In March of each year, regional competitions are held in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Schools can enter two teams consisting of three students each. The problems are posted in September of the previous year. From these competitions, the two top teams from each region compete in the NZ finals. The five students who will make up the New Zealand team are selected from these teams.

We rely on the generous support of the NZ Royal Society, tertiary institutions and the Physics teaching community to carry out this event annually.


IYPT (The World Cup of Physics) 2017 – saw students from 30 countries around the world gather in Singapore to debate their solutions to the 17 open ended problems set for the tournament. The students had carried out both theoretical and practical research to explain the phenomena. The New Zealand students had all participated in the NZYPT regional tournaments (Auckland or Wellington or Christchurch) and the national NZYPT tournament (Auckland) before gaining selection to the initial NZ squad and the final international New Zealand team. They qualified through competition between the other members of the NZ squad and attended two training camps held in Wellington and Auckland in the weeks before the international tournament in Singapore.

The placing for the top 10 teams at the end of the tournament were:

  1. Singapore - gold medal
  2. China - gold medal
  3. Poland - gold medal
  4. Hungary - gold medal
  5. New Zealand - silver medal
  6. Germany - silver medal
  7. Chinese - Taipei - silver medal
  8. Brazil - silver medal
  9. Czech Republic - silver medal
  10. Slovakia - bronze medal

In 2017 the New Zealand team won all 5 rounds of the main tournament and narrowly missed out on a place in the World Final and a gold medal.

For the full ranking of all countries go to the official IYPT results pages

IYPT Website

The 2018 IYPT will be held in Beijing, China.