PHY3052 
Nuclear and High Energy Physics 
202223 

Prof. E. Hendry 


Delivery Weeks: 
T2:0111 

Level: 
6 (NQF) 

Credits: 
15 NICATS / 7.5 ECTS 

Enrolment: 
118 students (approx) 

Description
This module is an introduction to nuclear and particle physics delivered as a series of
lectures and integrated selfstudy packs presenting topics as a series of keynote areas
forming the foundations of the subject. This is a core module for all Physics programmes
and is supported by Stage 3 tutorials and problems classes.
Module Aims
Investigations of the atomic nucleus and, of the fundamental forces
that determine nuclear structure, offer fascinating insights into the
nature of the physical world. The tools for probing these systems are
highenergy particle accelerators and, more recently, collidingbeam
systems. This module, aims to give students a broad overview of
the subject matter, and encouragement to seek further information.
Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)
A student who has passed this module should be able to:

Module Specific Skills and Knowledge:
 describe the key properties of the atomic nucleus and explain these properties
with the aid of an underlying theoretical framework;
 identify sequences of particles as energy excitations of a ground state;
 identify the quantum numbers that distinguish these sequences and use their conservation to analyse production processes;
 state the relevant conservation laws and use them in analysing meson decays;
 describe the basic weak interaction processes and the significant experiments that elucidate the nature of these;
 describe the quark model and be able to construct the quark composition of particles;
 explain the significance of symmetry to the multiplet structure of elementary particles;
 solve problems on topics included in the syllabus;

Discipline Specific Skills and Knowledge:
 identify significant applications which make use of nuclear physics,
and explain the role of nuclear physics in these applications;

Personal and Key Transferable / Employment Skills and Knowledge:
 give qualitative descriptions of complicated theories;
 reason logically within a set of given constraints;
 identify significant strands in a mass of confusing data.
Syllabus Plan

Nuclear structure
Nuclear forces; liquiddrop model; Segrè curve and interpretation. Shell model; evidence for 'magic' numbers;

Nuclear spin (SS1)
Conservation of spin and parity in nuclear decays. Nuclear spin resonance and magnetic resonance imaging.

Instability and modes of decay
αdecay, simple version of tunnelling theory; βdecay, neutrino theory,
summary of Fermi theory; Kurie plot. γdecay; nuclear decay schemes.

Beta decay theory (SS2)
Fermi theory of beta decay. Selection rules. Breaking of parity conservation in beta decay.

Nuclear reactions
Energetics; Qvalues; reaction thresholds. Compound nucleus model, partial widths.
Resonance reactions; BreitWigner formula. Fission and Fusion.

The neutrino (SS3)
Neutrino mixing angles and oscillation lengths. Neutrino masses.
Dirac vs Majorana neutrinos

Introduction to particle physics
Leptons, nucleons, hadrons, quarks and baryons. Symmetries and groups.

QED
Relativistic quantum theory of electromagnetic interactions; antiparticles,
electrodynamics of spinless particles, Dirac equation, electrodynamics of spin1/2 particles.

The Casimir force and QED (SS4)
Origin of the Casimir force. Zero point energy. High order corrections to interaction strengths in QED.
Calculating interactions strengths in QED. Extensions to strong and weak forces.

Partons
Structure of hadrons, gluons.

QCD
Relativistic quantum theory of the strong interactions of quarks and gluons.

Symmetry in the Standard Model (SS5)
Local symmetry in the Standard Model. Discrete symmetry: parity, charge conjugation and
time reversal, CPT theorem. CP violation in the weak and strong forces.

Weakinteractions
General structure, nonconservation of parity, massive neutrinos, neutrino experiments.
Inverse βdecay. Twoneutrino experiment. CP violation in βdecay.

Gauge symmetries
Gauge bosons
Learning and Teaching
Learning Activities and Teaching Methods
Description 
Study time 
KIS type 
20×1hour lectures 
20 hours

SLT 
2×1hour problems/revision classes 
2 hours

SLT 
3×1hour tutorials

3 hours

SLT 
5×6hour selfstudy packages 
30 hours

GIS 
4×4hour problem sets 
16 hours

GIS 
Reading, private study and revision 
79 hours

GIS 
Assessment
Weight 
Form 
Size 
When 
ILOS assessed 
Feedback 
0% 
Guided selfstudy 
5×6hour packages 
Fortnightly 
112 
Discussion in tutorials

0% 
4 × Problems sets 
4 hours per set 
Fortnightly 
112 
Solutions discussed in problems classes. 
100% 
Final Examination 
2 hours 30 minutes 
May/June 
112 
Mark via MyExeter, collective feedback via ELE and solutions. 
Resources
The following list is offered as an indication of the type & level of information that
students are expected to consult. Further guidance will be provided by the Module Instructor(s).
Core text:
Supplementary texts:

Cottingham W.M. and Greenwood D.A. (1998), An Introduction to the Standard Model of Particle Physics, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0521588324 (UL: 539.72 COT)

Halzen F. and Martin A.D. (1984), Quarks and Leptons: An Introductory Course in Modern Particle Physics, John Wiley, ISBN 0471887412 (UL: 539.721 HAL)

Krane K.S. (1987), Introductory Nuclear Physics, Wiley, ISBN 047180553X (UL: 539.7 KRA)

Lilley J. (2001), Nuclear Physics: Principles and Applications, John Wiley, ISBN 047197935X (UL: 539.7 LIL)
ELE:
Further Information
Prior Knowledge Requirements
Prerequisite Modules 
Quantum Mechanics I (PHY2022) 
Corequisite Modules 
none 
Reassessment
Reassessment is not available except when required by referral or deferral.
Original form of assessment 
Form of reassessment 
ILOs reassessed 
Time scale for reassessment 
Whole module 
Written examination (100%) 
112 
August/September assessment period 
Notes: See Physics Assessment Conventions.
KIS Data Summary
Learning activities and teaching methods 
SLT  scheduled learning & teaching activities 
25 hrs 
GIS  guided independent study 
125 hrs 
PLS  placement/study abroad 
0 hrs 
Total 
150 hrs 


Summative assessment 
Coursework 
0% 
Written exams 
100% 
Practical exams 
0% 
Total 
100% 

Miscellaneous
IoP Accreditation Checklist 
 QM10 Nuclear masses and binding energies
 QM11 Radioactive decay, fission and fusion
 QM12 Pauli exclusion principle, fermions and bosons and elementary particles
 QM13 Fundamental forces and the Standard Model

Availability 
unrestricted 
Distance learning 
NO 
Keywords 
Physics; Particle; Decays; Structures; Theory; Model; Quarks; Neutrino; Interaction; Energy; Conservative. 
Created 
01Oct10 
Revised 
N/A 