Prerequisites

An introductory course in atomic physics, such as PHYS2B24, and an introductory course in
quantum physics, such as ASTR2B11, PHYS2B22, or their equivalents in other departments.

Aim of the Course

The aim of the course is to provide an introduction to the physical concepts of nuclear and particle physics and the experimental techniques which they use.

Objectives

After completing the course, students should:

Specifically in nuclear physics, students should:

Specifically in particle physics, students should:

Specifically in experimental methods, students should:

Methodology and Assessment

The course consists of 30 lectures supplemented by 3 lecture periods for coursework
problems and other matters as they arise. Assessment is based on an unseen written
examination (90%) and the best 4 of 5 coursework problem papers (10%).

Textbooks

Core texts:

Nuclear Physics; Principles and Applications – J Lilly (Wiley)
Particle Physics (2nd Edn) – B R Martin and G Shaw (Wiley)
Particles and Nuclei (2nd Edn) –B Povh, K Rith, C Scholz and F Zetsche (Springer)

Other useful texts:

An Introduction to Nuclear Physics – W N Cottingham and D A Greenwood (Cambridge)
Nuclear and Particle Physics – W S C Williams (Oxford)
Introduction to Nuclear and Particle Physics – A Das and T Ferbel (Wiley)
Introduction to High Energy Physics (4th Edn) – D H Perkins (Cambridge)

Syllabus

The course is divided into eight sections. The approximate assignment of lectures to each is
shown in brackets.

1. Basic Ideas (3)

History; the standard model; relativity and antiparticles; particle reactions; Feynman
diagrams; particle exchange – range of forces; Yukawa potential; the scattering amplitude;
cross-sections; unstable particles; units: length, mass and energy

2. Nuclear Phenomenology (4)

Notation; mass and binding energies; nuclear forces; shapes and sizes; liquid drop model:
semi-empirical mass formula; nuclear stability; b –decay: phenomenology; a –decay;
fission; g -decay

3. Leptons, Quarks and Hadrons (4)

Lepton multiplets; lepton numbers; neutrinos; neutrino mixing and oscillations; universal
lepton interactions; numbers of neutrinos; evidence for quarks; properties of quarks; quark
numbers; hadrons; flavour independence and hadron multiplets

4. Experimental Methods (5)

Overview; accelerators; beams; particle interactions with matter (short-range interactions
with nuclei, ionisation energy losses, radiation energy losses, interactions of photons in
matter); particle detectors (time resolution: scintillation counters, measurement of position,
measurement of momentum, particle identification, energy measurements: calorimeters,
layered detectors)

5. Quark Interactions: QCD and Colour (3)

Colour; quantum chromodynamics (QCD); the strong coupling constant; asymptotic
freedom; jets and gluons; colour counting; deep inelastic scattering: nucleon structure

6. Electroweak Interactions (5)

Charged and neutral currents; symmetries of the weak interaction; spin structure of the weak
interactions; neutral kaons; K0 - K 0 mixing and CP violation; strangeness oscillations;
W ± and Z0 bosons; weak interactions of hadrons; neutral currents and the unified theory;
The Higgs boson

7. Structure of Nuclei (4)

Fermi gas model; the shell model: basic ideas; spins, parities and magnetic moments in the
shell model; excited states in the shell model; collective model; b -Decay; Fermi theory;
electron momentum distribution; Kurie plots and the neutrino mass

8. Fission and Fusion (2)

Induced fission – fissile materials; fission chain reactions; power from nuclear fission:
nuclear reactors; nuclear fusion: Coulomb barrier; stellar fusion; fusion reactors.

**3C24 Summary Lecture Notes** :

- Basic Ideas [PDF]
- Nuclear Phenomenology [PPT]
- Part 1
- Part 2
- Part 3

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