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PHY 415/515: Senior/Graduate Laboratory

The CASE Nuclear Structure Lab is offering 2 experiments to students in Phy 445/515. In each instance students will learn to operate the Tandem accelerator facility to do a classic nuclear physics experiment.

27Al (p,n) 27Si

An investigation of the neutron threshold for the 27Al (p,n) 27Si nuclear fusion reaction. Determination of a neutron threshold gives information on the isospin (p versus n) dependence of the nuclear force.

11B (p,n) 11C

Creation of 11C from 11B through the use of a proton beam, and study of the gamma rays produced by positron emission in 11C. This isotope is of interest for its use in Positron Emission Tomography (PET).

Here is the official PHY445/515 lab manual for this experiment 11B(p,n)11C

Common Schedule

Doing PHY 445/515 experiments in the CASE NSL requires a more rigid plan than most PHY 445/515 because there is so much to learn and because the accelerator must be shared with other students. A rough plan for either experiment is as follows:

Session One
Find the Van de Graaff building, meet the accelerator staff, take an introductory tour, take a lecture on ion source operation;
Session Two
Get introduced to LabView basics and the CASE NSL control system, develop and tune an ion source beam, begin work with detection electronics;
Session Three
Work with detector and electronics, take a lecture on Van de Graaff operation, bring Tandem VdG to a desired voltage;
Session Four
Work with target station and vacuum to install target, take a brief lecture on ion optics of our system, tune a beam to target with help;
Session Five
Develop and tune a beam to target with supervision (that's different than help ...), make a preliminary measurement;
Session Six
Conduct your experiment.
Session Seven
Repeat or refine your measurement as required.
Session Eight
Repeat or refine your measurement, investigate systematic errors, begin data reduction.

More Information

Even more information on PHY 445 and PHY 515 is available on Stony Brook University Blackboard