Fast timing silicon detectors for new scientific frontiers
Supervisor: Dr Dima Maneuski
School: Physics and Astronomy
Silicon sensors are essential in a range of fields, from cutting-edge research (materials science, particle physics, chemistry) to industry (agriculture, manufacturing), and everyday devices (cameras, security). They are the eyes of our electronic world. As scientists developmore precise sensors, for example cameras with smaller pixels, the potential reach of these devices increases, allowing more processes to be investigated, and with more detail. Currently the resolution of such sensors is at the micrometre level. However, the time precision is relatively much worse, due to significant technological challenges in assigning times to the signals in the silicon. The best precision for small-pixel silicon sensors is at the nanosecond (ns) level. By comparison, light travels 300,000 micrometresper ns. Our ability to observe many processes is significantly hampered by limitations in time precision.
LGADis a new type of the Avalanche Silicon Detector concept with a gain in the region of 5-10. The lower gain increases signal to noise ratio in comparison with a planar silicon detector and have reduced noise compared to an avalanche photodiode. The LGADs can be highly segmented and assembled into hybrid pixel detectors.
This research project aims to characterise, for the first time small-pitch pad and pixelated silicon Low Gain Avalanche Detectors (LGAD) allowingsimultaneous precise measurements of particle position (within 15μm) and time (within 50ps). Such sensors will ultimately open-up new fields of research and have broad applications in fundamental research (electron microscopy), applied science & industry (functionalmaterials), and in the healthcaresector (proton therapy).
Background in Particle or Nuclear Physics or Engineering
Basic knowledge of electronics
Basic lab skills
Basic presentation skills
Basic Python / c++ / git
Strong ability to work in a team