Level:Part II (yr 2)
Course Convenor:Dr IR Bailey
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Prior to PHYS235, the student must have successfully completed:
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CMod descriptionback to top
General properties of nuclei: mass, isotopes,
isobars, spin. Nuclear forces and charge independence; binding energy; binding
energy per nucleon as a function of mass number. Liquid drop model;
semi-empirical mass formula with energy quantisation and Pauli Exclusion
Principle refinement. Single particle shell model; nuclear ground state spins
and magnetic moments. Alpha, Beta and Gamma decay; Fission and Fusion; Nuclear
reactions. Relativistic kinematics; applications to high energy particle
collisions; fixed target versus colliding beam machines. Electromagnetic, weak
and strong forces; conservation laws; baryon number, lepton number, strangeness
and charm. Quark model of hadrons and deep inelastic scattering experiments.
The Standard Model; 3 generations of quarks and leptons; force carrying
particles the photons, the W and Z, and the gluon; electroweak unification
and QCD. The origin of mass and the Higgs boson; parity and CP violation; the
matter-antimatter asymmetry of the Universe.
Curriculum Design: Outline Syllabusback to top
This is an introductory, concepts-based course designed to give students some basic understanding of nuclei and of fundamental particles, i.e. particles with no observed substructure. The course covers the general properties of nuclei, such as composition, the forces within the nucleus, mass, binding energy, isotopes, isobars, and isotones. The Liquid Drop Model of nuclei and the Semi-Empirical Mass Formula are presented.
Alpha, beta and gamma decays, fission and fusion, and nuclear reactions such as neutron activation, are discussed.
Students are then introduced to the Standard Model of Particle Physics, including the three generations of fundamental particles; the strong, weak and electromagnetic fundamental forces; quark and lepton flavours; the composition of matter; conservation laws such as conservation of baryon number, lepton number or flavour; and the force propagators: photons, W and Z particles, and gluons. The Higgs particle, the CKM matrix, and factors that affect cross-sections and decay rates are discussed, such as Cabibbo suppression and the OZI rule. Examples of measurements from recent and current experiments often are used to illustrate the concepts.
Educational Aims: Subject Specific: Knowledge, Understanding and Skillsback to top
Students will need to develop skill in processing verbal information during a lecture and making appropriate notes, and in finding additional information from a variety of sources including textbooks, particle physics manuals, and the web. They will be encouraged to look for patterns and similarities in various nuclear and particle interactions in order to unpack and simplify seemingly-complicated problems.
Learning Outcomes: Subject Specific: Knowledge, Understanding and Skillsback to top
On completion of the module, students should be able to:
- Explain the basic concepts of the physics of the nucleus
- describe the principles of fission and fusion
- describe the fundamental forces and the basic building blocks of matter
- have an appreciation of the scope and precision of the Standard Model of particle physics.
Curriculum Design: Select Bibliographyback to top
Nuclear and Particle Physics, W S C Williams