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2010/1 Module Catalogue
 Module Code: PHY3021 Module Title: HIGH ENERGY PHYSICS
Module Provider: Physics Short Name: PH3-HEP10
Level: HE3 Module Co-ordinator: STEVENSON PD Dr (Physics)
Number of credits: 10 Number of ECTS credits: 5
Module Availability

Semester 1.

Assessment Pattern

Unit(s) of Assessment


Weighting Towards Module Mark( %)


Examination (End of semester)




Qualifying Condition(s) 


University general regulations refer.


Module Overview

A level HE3 prescribed module constituting a comprehensive course on elementary particle physics.



PHY1024/PHY1025 – Space, Time and Relativity.


Module Aims

To understand the principles and consequences of the Standard Model of elementary particle physics.  To be able to classify elementary and composite particles, to understand and use conservation laws and selection rules in their reactions.  To be able to calculate reaction properties using relativistic kinematics.


Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, students should be able to;


i.                Perform kinematic calculations in the context of elementary particle physics reactions, including aspects of relativistic kinematics and collision statistics


ii.              Describe the families of fundamental particles and the ways in which they interact with each other and to apply this knowledge by analogy to similar particles.


iii.             Have a critical understanding of the experimental evidence behind results in the standard model, and ways in which physics beyond the standard model may be manifest;


iv.            Appreciate the variety of experimental techniques and challenges in particle physics and be able to describe the operation of the most common detector devices


Module Content

i.                Relativistic kinematics. Particle detectors, beam characteristics.


ii.              Classification of elementary particles.  Leptons, hadrons and bosons.  Symmetry and anitsymmetry. Interaction between particles. Conservation laws. The four fundamental forces – strong, weak, electromagnetic and gravitational;


iii.             Composite particles: quark and gluon structure of mesons and baryons, colour charge, Pauli exclusion principle.  Quantum numbers: spin, isospin, parity, strangeness, charm, bottomness, topness.  Production and decay of particles. Particles and antiparticles.  The evidence for all these quantities.


iv.            Scattering experiments; evidence for parton structure; deep inelastic scattering off nuclei, nucleons;


v.              Limits of the Standard Model: evidence for number of particle families, CKM matrix and unitarity. The Higgs boson.


Methods of Teaching/Learning

24 hours of lectures.  Problems will be set which can be returned to the lecturer for marking or used in the level three tutorial clasees.


Selected Texts/Journals



i.                Introduction to Elementary Particle Physics, Alessandro Bettini, Cambridge University Press, 2008.





i.        Martin and Shaw, Particle Physics, Wiley, Chichester, 2008


ii.       Francis Halzen and Alan D Martin, Quarks and Leptons, Wiley, Chichester, 1984.


iii.      Donald H Perkins, Introduction to High Energy Physics, CUP, Cambridge, 2000.


iv.      W S C Williams, Nuclear and Particle Physics, OUP, Oxford, 1991.



Last Updated

August 2010.