Particle and Astroparticle Physics Research at KTH
The section is involved in a broad range of topics. Below a is brief description of the research projects that we are involved in and links to find more information.
The research of particle physics group is based on the frontline of hadron collider experiments. The main scientific goals are to search for the Higgs boson and to probe for physics beyond the standard model, where the search for supersymmetry is a key element. One fundamental question is if the lightest supersymmetric particle constitutes the bulk of the dark matter. The KTH group has since 1990 taken its share in the development and later the construction of the ATLAS liquid argon electromagnetic calorimeter. ATLAS is one of the large experiments at the CERN Large Hadron Collider. KTH has shared the responsibility for the construction, assembly and testing of the ATLAS presampler with a research group from Grenoble. This device, mounted inside the barrel liquid argon cryostat compensates for energy losses in front of the electromagnetic accordion type calorimeter. The group is also involved in ATLAS heavy quark studies as a probe of QCD.
The astroparticle physics group conducts research on the high-energy universe through the study of X- and gamma-radiation and cosmic rays. The fundamental scientific questions currently addressed concern the nature of dark matter, and gamma-ray bursts, the production of cosmic antiparticles, and emission mechanisms from compact objects. The primary focus is the design and development of three strategic satellite- and balloon-borne instruments, as well as the analysis and astrophysical interpretation of the data obtained with these instruments.(1) PAMELA is a satellite-borne experiment which is optimised for the study of cosmic ray antiparticles (positrons and antiprotons) in the energy range ~100 MeV - 200 GeV using a permanent magnet spectrometer and imaging calorimeter. (2) The Fermi satellite was launched in June 2008 on a 10 year long mission to study celestial gamma-ray sources in the energy range 10 MeV - 300 GeV, with unique sensitivity. (3) PoGOLite is a balloon-borne instrument which will make pioneering observations of polarised soft gamma-rays (25 keV to ~100 keV) from compact objects, such as pulsars and black hole accretion disks, measurements which will are of great scientific importance.