Experimental particle physics is devoted to the design and construction of instrumentation that directly probes the most fundamental forms of matter accessible to scientists, together with the corresponding analysis of the obtained data. Particle physicists hope to find and study, in high energy experiments, all forms of matter and their interactions predicted by theoretical particle physics and cosmology. The most powerful collider ever built, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), is shedding light to many of the unsolved questions in particle physics.
ICCUB’s experimental particle physicists are specialized in the study of flavor physics. Specifically in measuring CP violation effects and rare decays of particles containing b or c quarks. Their long track record in this field go back into the design, construction and exploitation in the Hera-B experiment at the DESY lab, in Hamburg and the participation in the BaBar experiment at the SLAC National lab, at Stanford, CA. Currently the group is fully involved in LHCb experiment data analysis, and on its projected upgrades, searching for physics beyond the SM through rare flavour changing neutral currents.
The LHCb detector, one of the four detectors of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in CERN (Geneva), is designed to study this asymmetry through the b and anti-b particle pairs produced in proton collisions. The ICCUB, aside from its participation at a scientific level, undertook the design, production and installation of the electronics of the SPD (Scintillator Pad Detector) part of the calorimeter. In addition the ICCUB participated in the development of the Data-GRID computer network and the DIRAC software, which are essential in the data analysis and simulation processes, not only in LHCb, but also in all HEP experiments nowadays.
An updated LHCb detector was installed in 2019 and operations restart is scheduled for 2020. The ICCUB participates in the design and production of the new fast readout (RO) electronics of photo-sensors in of both the calorimeter and the new central tracker (to be based on Scintillating Fibers).
The acquired experience in RO electronics instrumentation is now being further exploited to study the possibility to join new experimental collaborations that search for DM candidates of new physics beyond the SM, such as IAXO, SHiP, RADES, among others.
LINES OF RESEARCH
Physics of B and Charm mesons
Charge-Parity (CP) symmetry violation
Search for deviations from the Standard Model in rare B meson decays.
Design, prototype, test, installation, operation and maintenance of readout electronics for photo-sensors for high energy, astrophysics and medical imaging experiments.
Simulation and study of the radiation hardness of avalanche photodetectors.