The goal of this course is to introduce experimental spectroscopy techniques useful both for basic research and in numerous applications in various sectors. The student will use detectors of different types and will be able to acquire and correlate a number of parameters related to the quantities to be measured. Data analysis will be performed using computer programs that will allow the student to intervene externally in order to optimize the procedures to be adapted for their specific cases. In particular with this laboratory the students will learn on the mechanisms of energy release by gamma-rays and the techniques for their measurement. The detectors used are both scintillators and solid state types. The best techniques for measuring time distributions will also be also learned. The data analysis uses the correlation between several parameters to arrive at the identification of the nuclei and at the construction of their level schemes.
Expected learning outcomes
The students will learn about the operation and use of scintillator and solid-state detectors to measure gamma-ray energy and life time of nuclear levels. The students will learn to set up data acquisitions of multiple parameters and to analyze the data in order to deduce information connected to a specific nucleus from sets of data that for their nature contain information concerning several nuclei. These techniques are the basis of the operation of arrays containing many detectors, used both for basic physics and for applications. Therefore what is learned here represents an important training ground for different career opportunities.
Lesson period: Second semester
(In case of multiple editions, please check the period, as it may vary)
Radiation sources radiation interaction with matter - light charged particles - heavy charged particles and ions - gamma radiation General properties of the detectors Gamma radiation response functions Scintillation detectors Hyperpure Germanium detectors
Experimental characterization of different types of scintillation detectors - NaI - BaF2 - LaB3 Experimental characterization of a hyperpure Germanium detector Energy Resolution Measures Efficiency measurements Time resolution measures Complex multi-parameter measurements Reconstruction of the structure of the energy levels of 152Sm and 152Gd
Prerequisites for admission
Notions of electromagnetism and fundamental physics. Notions of statistical methods for data analysis
Introduction to the course and to the measurements to be performed with lectures. Measurement activities to be carried out in the laboratory using the available equipments. Data acquisition and analysis with computers and multi purpose programs made available to students.
The final evaluation is a mark out of thirty obtained following an oral interview in which the general and methodological aspects of the laboratory activity are discussed. A written report is required that presents the results obtained and provide comments on them in terms of physical effects.