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The Dame Kathleen Ollerenshaw Mathsbombe logo

From the people behind the Alan Turing Cryptography Competition.
You are reading the website of the 2020 edition of the MathsBombe Competition, which ended on Sunday 26 April at 11:59 pm
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Do you like solving mind-bending mathematical brainteasers?
Can you and your friends untangle some fiendish puzzles?
Would you like the chance to use your mathematical skills to win some great prizes?
Then the MathsBombe is for you!

MathsBombe is aimed at students up to Year 13 (England and Wales), S6 (Scotland), Year 14 (Northern Ireland). You don't need to be a computer whizz or a mathematical genius — you just need to keep your wits about you and be good at solving puzzles! (see the rules on eligibility.)

What do I have to do and how can I take part?

The competition starts on Wednesday 29 January 2020, and you can go to the registration page to create a new team (or join an existing team). A team consists of at most 4 members. Registration opens on Monday 2 December 2019 (you can request an email reminder on the registration page). See this section for more details.

Every two weeks a new puzzle set will be released. Each puzzle set contains two mathematical puzzles for you and your team to solve. The puzzles span the whole spectrum of mathematics: from fiendish logic puzzles in pure mathematics to applications of mathematics in real-world settings. You'll need to keep your wits about you and `think-outside-the-box': complicated techniques from A-level or computer coding probably won't help you!

There are four puzzle sets in total (so eight puzzles across the competition). Points can be earned by solving each puzzle and submitting your answer. The leaderboard keeps track of how well each team is doing. (See the FAQ for how the scoring works.)

What can I win?

  1. If your team are the first to solve both puzzles in a given puzzle set, then each team member wins £15 in Amazon gift vouchers.
  2. Each member of the teams that finish in first, second and third place on the leaderboard win £30, £25 and £20, respectively, in Amazon gift vouchers, and the teams' schools will win a trophy.
  3. Each chapter also has a number of spot prizes: for each chapter, spot prizes (of £10 Amazon gift vouchers per team member) can be won by up to 3 randomly chosen teams — but you'll have to be fast: spot prizes can only be won before the next puzzle set is released!
(See the FAQ and rules for how the prizes are determined and how they are sent out.)

About the organisers.

MathsBombe is organised by the Department of Mathematics at The University of Manchester. It is the sister competition to the Alan Turing Cryptography Competition.

The competition is supported by the Dame Kathleen Ollerenshaw Trust.

MathsBombe Competition 2020 is organised by the The Department of Mathematics at The University of Manchester.
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