PHYSICS LAB IV

Degree course: 
Corso di First cycle degree in Physics
Academic year when starting the degree: 
2014/2015
Year: 
3
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
2016/2017
Course type: 
Compulsory subjects, characteristic of the class
Credits: 
6
Period: 
First Semester
Standard lectures hours: 
66
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (66 hours)
Requirements: 

- knowledge of statistics and of the error theory
- basic knowledge of the English language

Assessment: 
Voto Finale

- study of the basic principles of the radiation-matter interaction
- study of the working principles of particle detectors and their features
- development of the capability of performing experiments in nuclear physics analyzing problems and results
- development of the capability of working in a team and of using advanced analysis techniques
- development of the capability of choosing the right detector given the physical measurement requirements

Course program

The course is divided in different phases:
- theoretical introduction to the radiation-matter interaction and to the different types of particle detectors
- first set of experiments: gamma spectroscopy and absorption using scintillating detectors; beta particles counting and absorption using a Geiger detector; X-ray scattering on crystals using a solid state detector
- second set of “advanced” experiments: nuclear lifetime measurement of the Co-57 isotope; cosmic ray radiation characterization using a silicon strip detector; X-Ray Fluorescence measurements using a didactic X-Ray tube
- according to the groups dimensions and interests and to the available time, a third set of experiments concerning particle physics or medical physics can be performed in real research laboratories (CERN, INFN-Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati) or in the Sant'Anna Hospital in Como

Teaching methods

The course is divided in:
- introduction lessons concerning both theoretical principles and the single experiments
- laboratory and data analysis sessions in groups

The course duration is 66 hours. Tutors are available during the experiments to help the different groups.

Textbooks and references

The reference texts are the following:
- W.R.Leo, ISBN 0-387-57280-5
- A.C.Melissinos, ISBN 0124898513
- dedicated seminars

Students are provided with the slides of the lessons and dedicated material (notes and articles).

Final exam

Several elements/steps are used in the evaluation procedure:
- the activity in the laboratory and the organization of the logbook
- the laboratory reports: reports have to be delivered before the oral examination and modifications have to be implemented if required. The reports are "pre-compiled": introductory parts are common to all groups and the analysis and results that have to be inserted and commented are clearly indicated.
- the oral exam, which starts with a topic chosen by the students on which a 20 minute lesson is given. The student is then questioned on the other topics of the course, with questions able to show the skills he/she has acquired.

Professors