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Unformatted text preview: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS October 12, 2011 Content Questions Can you give a summary of basic knowledge of particle physics we need for this class? For the most part, you won’t need much specialized knowledge of particle physics for this class, with the exception of the energy loss material we went through today. I think most of the material we’ll be using in the rest of the course can be understood making use of basic undergrad-level quantum and electromagnetism. You need to know: • That there are different basic kinds of elementary and composite par- ticles, with different masses, charges, spins etc. . Some are stable and some are not. The basic reference for particle properties is the Particle Data Group tables. You don’t need to memorize names or properties of particles, but you do need to know where to look them up. • Relativistic kinematics, the basics of which is covered by most sophomore- or junior-level quantum texts. The PDG has a concise reference. If you are not a particle or nuclear person, you might not be accus- tomed to using relativistic kinematic expressions every day, so you might want to spend a bit of time reviewing. Chapter 3 of Grif- fiths, Introduction to Elementary Particles has a good summary. Here is another link I found from googling around with a nice summary: http://www.phys.ufl.edu/ korytov/phz6355/note A02 kinematics.pdf. As for the energy loss material from today’s lecture: if you are a particle or nuclear person, you’ll definitely need to know this material for your re- search. If not, you probably don’t need to know every detail, but the Geant4 simulations we’ll be working on deal with particles losing energy in material, so it’s a good thing to have some basic familiarity with the processes that occur for the most common particle types. If the energy loss material went by too fast today, you might get a copy of Leo and to go through the energy loss chapter. This book is quite accessible. Apart from these topics, I think there’s not too much else specific to particle physics you need to know. What is the motivation for the random, probabilistic nature of the processes? ... Why do we want Monte Carlo? How random are all of the processes, and why do we care about the fluctuations instead of just averages? Observable energy loss tends to be the sum of many interactions. Each interaction’s occurence, and its effects, tend to be probabilistic: there is some probability for something to happen (say, an ionization) in a given path length, and also a probability distribution of possible outcomes: for...
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This note was uploaded on 01/16/2012 for the course PHYSICS 392 taught by Professor Scholberg during the Fall '11 term at Duke.
- Fall '11