European School of Instrumentation
in Particle & Astroparticle Physics
Course 2 - Technologies

Technologies & Applications


The second course proposes 4 separate modules on specific topics, taught by experts in the field.

Applications are welcome from 2nd year Master and PhD students as well as professionals.

Practical lab sessions in different domains (Detectors, DAQ, FPGA, Advanced electronics, composite materials ) are organized at ESI-Archamps, CERN and Grenoble (LPSC).



week 5 - Detector Technologies & Electronics


- Detector Technologies

After a brief reminder on the interaction of particles with matter, and the general features of detectors, this course will describe all the modern technologies of particle detection including gaseous detectors of all kinds, solid state sensors, scintillator & Cherenkov counters, liquid noble detectors and low temperature devices as the ones that are used in cosmology experiments.


- Signal Processing and Electronics

There's no detectors without great electronics. In some cases, electronics and detectors are integrated on a monolithic chips. This course will introduce all fundamental electronics notions experimental particle physicists should know to design a detector. Analog and digital electronics will be reviewed. Students will be taught how to use a free version of Spice to design their analog electronic devices.


- Gravitational wave detection

This course will start with an introduction of the recent detections of gravitational waves with the LIGO and Virgo detectors. Such detections have been made possible thanks to kilometric interferometers which are sensitive to length variations of their arms smaller than 10^-19 m. The techniques deployed in gravitational wave detectors to reach the required sensitivities will then be described.



week 6 - Real Time Computing & Data Handling


- Ultra cold Neutrons production and detection

 More than eighty years after its discovery, the neutron remains the subject of many fascinating research programs, e.g. the precise measurement of their lifetime or their electrical dipole moment, supposedly very small in the standard model. Only a few laboratories in the world master the production & detection of ultra-cold neutrons (UCN). This course will introduce the basic
physical principles governing UCN production, their transport and storage and finally their detection. It will be illustrated by a few experiments.


 - DATA Handling Technologies

 With GRID computing, data handling is the second key domains to master in order to more efficiently understand our the data are technically analyzed in big scientific projects theses days. Students will learn the key concepts and technologies used to set a data server.


 - Trigger and data acquisition (Trigger , TDAQ software , FPGA , VME and modular electronics)

 Triggering and data acquisition is a key feature of many physics experiments. This course is organized as a series of lectures given on data acquisition (DAQ) issues starting from event triggering and then exploring several of the  key components in use in modern DAQ systems.


 - Project management(part 1)

 This course will be given by someone who is a member of the CERN project office. The method developed here is adapted to big scientific projects in particle and astroparticle physics. As an exercise, students will have to work on planning & organizing a project.



week 7 - Mechanics & Medical Applications


- Composite Materials

Because of their exceptional mechanical properties composite materials such as glass-epoxy and carbon fiber, are now found in places in particle detectors. Students will be introduced with the basic and useful knowledge that will help them design and select the most appropriate materials for their future applications. A practical session organized in Compositec, a unique training center localized in Aix-les-Bains, will show students how to manufacture a part using a composite material.


 - Medical Applications

  All particle detection techniques have medical applications : positron emission tomography, single photon emission computed tomography... Compared to laboratory experiments, medical imaging instruments are operated in a different context by medical doctors and medical physicists that have developed an appropriate language and set of technical features. The course will introduce the world of nuclear medical imaging instruments and make the connection with particle detectors.


- Additive printing

Additive or 3D printing has become a prototype production technique in many domains. It helps produce mechanical parts that would be almost impossible to machine using more traditional techniques.


 - Project management (part 2)

 This course will be given by someone who is a member of the CERN project office. The method developed here is adapted to big scientific projects in particle and astroparticle physics. As an exercise, students will have to work on planning & organizing a project.



week 8 - Offline Computing


- Magnet For Particle Detectors

Superconducting magnets are among the first choice components in a collider experiment. They are also some of the most difficult parts to build and indeed some of the most expensive ones as well. The engineering knowledge of how to build big magnets such as the CMS solenoid or the ATLAS toroids is only mastered by a few labs in Europe. This course will introduce the physics and the technology of superconductivity. It will be exemplified by the ATLAS and CMS superconducting magnets.


 - C++ programming

 C++ has become the reference object-oriented language in particle and astroparticle computing. After a very brief reminder, students will be brought to some of the most advanced programming notions in C++ with practical exercises.


 - Python programming

 Python is one of the most popular scripting languages. It is heavily used by LHC experiments in their software. Python can be freely installed on all computing plate-forms. Lots of free licence Python packages can be found on the web to solve many computing problems including formal calculation. This lecture will introduce the bases of Python programming.


 - Grid computing

 Grid computing is the key technique that made the LHC data treatment problem possible. It is now used in many disciplines. This course will introduce in practice how calculations can be “gridified”.



Closing conference : Space projects

The final day of the school is dedicated to space projects and how Ariane flights are planned and managed.

This exceptional lecture is given by Jan Droz a specialist of CNES (the French National Center for Space Studies), and Isabelle Rongier a specialist of Airbus Safran Launchers.