Division of Nuclear Physics
The nuclear physics division at Helmholtz-Center Dresden-Rossendorf performs research on the structure of atomic nuclei and reactions between them. Our research helps to understand the genesis of the chemical elements in cosmic scenarios and applies such knowledge in nuclear interactions to advanced concepts in nuclear waste management and reduction. Furthermore, we develop new types of radiation detectors for fundamental research, medicine, and applications. We perform applied materials research using nuclear physics methods, and we are responsible for several user beam lines at the superconducting electron linear accelerator ELBE.
Nuclear Physics Data for Science and Technology
We investigate neutron-induced and photonuclear reactions to provide data relevant to basic science, nuclear astrophysics, and technology.
- At the nELBE photo-neutron source an intensive, continuous spectrum of 1011 neutrons per second is generated. Time of flight measurements allow to precisely determine reaction rates e.g. of inelastic neutron scattering and neutron induced fission.
- The γELBE bremsstrahlung source generates a photon spectrum with an end point energy of up to 18 MeV. Nuclear reactions and nuclear structure are studied by photon scattering and photoactivation, both in conjunction with high resolution γ spectroscopy.
Positron Annihilation Spectroscopy
Positron Annihilation Spectroscopy (PAS) allows non-destructive investigations in the research fields materials research, chemistry, and biological tissue. Positrons, being the anti-particles of electrons, are employed as highly sensitive probes for material defects at the nanometer scale.
At HZDR, several setups with complementary features are used in PAS research:
- MePS: Mono-energetic Positron Source at the superconducting elelectron LINAC ELBE.
- GiPS: Gamma-induced Positron Source at ELBE using high energy photons from bremsstrahlung production inside the sample.
- SPONSOR: Mono-energetic positron beam fed by the decay of Na-22 for (Coincidence-) Doppler-broadening spectroscopy.
- LT: Conventional positron annihilation lifetime spectroscopy (based on Na-22).
Detector Development for basic research
For basic research, detectors with very high time resolution and excellent sensitivity are required. This is particularly true for the experiments HADES, CBM, and R3B at GSI and FAIR in Darmstadt, Germany. A long-standing, sustained effort has been mounted at HZDR to support these experiments by developing and testing high-performance detectors, especially for timing purposes. New concepts for detector development are being transferred to medical applications and to research in high-energy density research. We develop time-of-flight detectors with 0.1 ns time resolution, enabling kinematically complete experiments.
Nuclear reactions deliver the energy that powers our Sun, and they are the source of the chemical elements that are necessary for human life.
- We study astrophysically important radiative-capture reactions in Dresden at the surface of the Earth, and at LUNA deep underground in the Gran Sasso, Italy. Since July 2019, we operate Europe's first MV underground accelerator in the Felsenkeller laboratory in Dresden.
- We investigate rare hadronic processes in nuclear matter.
- Xingming Fan successfully defended his PhD thesis on "Testing RPC Performance with Discharges Ignited by UV Laser Pulses: Precise measurement of gas parameters in approximately realistic RPC configurations" with magna cum laude October 21th, 2019 at the Technische Universität Dresden. Congratulations and Gōngxǐ, Xingming.
- At the Nuclear Physics in Astrophysics IX conference in Castle Waldthausen, close to Mainz, from September 15th to 20th 2019, Franziska Schoger won the poster award for her work on 22Ne(p,γ)23Na resonances at HZDR's 3 MV tandetron accelerator. Congratulations to you, Franziska!
- Eric Hirschmann won the second poster award at the 15th International Workshop on Slow Positron Beam Techniques & Applications (SLOPOS-15) which took place from September 2. to September 6. in Prague. Congratulations, Eric!
- Our underground laboratory in the Felsenkeller saw his first accelerated beam with the Pelletron on 3.7.2019. Prof. Takaaki Kajita (Univ. Tokio, Nobel laureate in physics 2015) started scientific operations one day later. Congratulations and many, many thanks to all who have contributed to this success in PD. Dr. Daniel Bemmerer's team!
- Thu Trang Trinh successfully defendend here PhD thesis on "The microscopic effects of transition metal based hydrogen storing and sensing thin films" with magna cum laude December 17th, 2018 at the Technische Universität Dresden. Chúc mừng, Trang.
- Stefan Reinicke successfully defendend his PhD thesis on "Solar hydrogen burning in the sun: The 12C(p,γ)13N-reaction and a radio-frequency ion-source for the Felsenkeller-accelerator" with magna cum laude November 2nd, 2018 at the Technische Universität Dresden. Congratulations, Stefan.
- The June 2018 edition of HZDR's inhouse journal Insider contains an article about materials research with positrons: "Signale aus der ANTI-WELT. Positronenforschung am HZDR".
- Daniel Gehre successfully defendend his PhD thesis on "Investigations on CdZnTe-Semiconductor-Detectors for the Search of the Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay" with magna cum laude June 21st, 2018 at the Technische Universität Dresden. Congratulations, Daniel.
- Louis Wagner successfully defendend his PhD thesis on "Precise nuclear data of the 14N(p,γ)15O reaction for solar neutrino predictions" with magna cum laude June 7th , 2018 at the Technische Universität Dresden. Cheerio, Louis!
- The publication "The γ-ray angular distribution in fast neutron inelastic scattering from iron" by Roland Beyer, et al. has been selected to illustrate the front cover of the European Physical Journal, issue 54/4, 2018. A wounderful recognition of your work, Roland!
- Maik Butterling finished the 42. Leipzig half-marathon distance in remarkable 1 h 53 m 3 s, hitting almost exactly 5:11 m / km - a positron annihilators special number. Congratulations, Maik.
- The new beamline connecting the upcoming AIDA-II setup, short for Apparatus for In-situ Defect Analysis, with the MePS positron beam line has been commissioned successfully April 18th, 2018. Deep thanks go to Maik Görler, Andreas Hartmann, Daniel Stach, and Stefan Findeisen for design and construction, hours spent winding coils and installation of all components.
Active third-party funded projects
- EURATOM coordination and support project "Accelerator and Research reactor Infrastructures for Education and Learning (ARIEL)"(2019-2023)
- SAB "Development of high-rate radiation detectors based on new types of ceramics resistive plates", L. Naumann and Fraunhofer IKTS Dresden, iseg Dresden, GBS Dresden and MicroCeram Meißen (2019-2021).
- DFG "Combining spectroscopic methods for fundamental studies of pore and network formation in mesoporous low-k dielectrics", A. Wagner, S. Schulz (TU Chemnitz, Fraunhofer ENAS Chemnitz) (2018-2021)
- DFG "Lithium production", D. Bemmerer, K. Zuber (TU Dresden) (2017-2020)
Previous third-party funded projects
- EU-FP7 "CHANDA: solving CHAllenges in Nuclear DAta", A. R. Junghans (2013-2018)
- DAAD "PPP Tschechien: Leerstellen und Leerstellen-Wasserstoffkomplexe in ZnO", W. Anwand (2015-2016)
- Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft, Partner beim virtuellen Institut NAVI, D. Bemmerer (2011-2016)
- DFG "Untersuchung des Einflusses der Kerndeformation auf Dipol-Stärkeverteilungen", R. Schwengner (2011-2014)
- BMBF, Energie 2020+, "Transmutationsrelevante kernphysikalische Untersuchungen mit Einsatz moderner technologischer und numerischer Methoden", A. R. Junghans (2009-2014)
- DAAD "PPP Tschechien: Untersuchung der Mikrostruktur dünner Metallfilme", W. Anwand (2011-2012)
- DFG "alpha capture for astrophysics", D. Bemmerer (2009-2014)
- EU-FP7 "ERINDA: European Research Infrastructures for Nuclear Data Applications ", A. R. Junghans (2010-2013, project coordinator)
- BMBF "Hadronen- und Kernphysik", T. Cowan / A. Wagner (2009-2012)
- DFG "Photodissoziation des Deuterons", A. R. Junghans (2008-2012)
- EU-FP6 "EFNUDAT: European Facilities for Nuclear Data Measurements", A. R. Junghans (2007-2010)