DOE-INFN Summer Exchange Program - 2016 Edition (March 10th, updated on March 24th)


(during this period administrative offices will be closed. Pleae, refer to the local INFN web pages for further details)

Bari 4

2 positions: CMS

Title: Search for dark matter candidates through a “monoHiggs” signature with four leptons in the final state, with the CMS experiment at the LHC.

Description: Search for dark matter is one of the priorities of the experiment at LHC for the Run 2 and 3. In particular this project focuses on the search for dark matter candidates through a “monoHiggs” signature with four leptons in the final state, in the context of “Higgs Portal” theoretical models and other simplified approaches. We intend to profit from the existence of the Higgs particle, discovered at LHC in 2012, to tag the possibility to reveal Dark Matter through pair production of dark matter candidates together with the Higgs boson. The analysis would involve the reconstruction of four leptons and missing energy in the final state and the estimate of the background from data. A complete simulation of the signal and background processes and the design of the analysis cuts are foreseen for the medium term.  Studies about the observables as expected by the Monte Carlo simulation and 2015 and 2016 data are expected to be high priority.  A statistical interpretation of the results in the context of a Higgs portal model would be the final goal of the analysis.

Tutors: Nicola De Filippis (, Giorgia Miniello (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


Title: Search of Z' heavy boson decaying in di-muon final state, with the CMS experiment at the LHC.

Description: The new Run2/3 hera of data taking at the LHC opens new scenarios to test physics beyond the Standard Model. In particular this project focuses on the search of Z’ heavy gauge boson decaying in di-muon final state in the context of Grand Unified Filed theories and several other BSM models.  The discovery of these new particles could be shown up through a peak in the di-muon invariant mass spectrum, as an experimental evidence of the production of a heavy resonance, over a continuum representing the background expected by the Standard Model processes and in particular Drell-Yan pair production. Some of the most challenging chapters for this experimental analysis are related to the reconstruction/identification of high transverse momentum muons and the estimate of the background that would involve the developments of new analysis strategies based on selection cuts and/or multivariate analysis. The applicant is expected to work on Monte Carlo simulation and real data collected by CMS in 2015 and 2016.  In absence of an excess in the di-muon invariant mass the results will be interpreted in the context of the simple extension of the Standard Model. 

Tutors: Nicola De Filippis (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


1 Position: GooFit

Title: Developing GPU-Friendly Algorithms for High Energy Physics

Description: GooFit is a GPU-friendly framework for performing maximum likelihood fits.  It mimics the functionality of RooFit, a standard C++ toolkit used in the High Energy Physics (HEP) community. GooFit provides a function evaluation engine designed to exploit the highly parallel architecture of nVidia GPUs.  It runs especially well on specially-designed high performance GPU boards and on high end gaming GPUs. It also runs very well on conventional multi-core CPUs using OpenMP. The HEP group in Bari has used GooFit to do very high statistics coverage studies for the CMS experiment (unbinned maximum likelihood fitting and high statistics pseudo-experiments for p-value estimation). A student working on this project will help to develop, test and document new GooFit features.  The student should have a strong background in C++ programming. Some experience with CUDA will be useful. Background in physics or statistics would also be useful. In addition to working directly with members of the CMS Bari group, the student will collaborate with University of Cincinnati and Ohio Supercomputer Center developers of GooFit. 

For more information,  see: , and

Tutors: Alexis Pompili ( and Adriano Di Florio (

Preferred period: June-July (highly preferred) or September-October


1 Position: ALICE

Title: Study of open beauty production in Pb-Pb collisions in the ALICE experiment using semi-inclusive decays.

Description: The ALICE experiment at the LHC is dedicated to the study of heavy ion collisions to characterize the properties of strongly interacting matter at very high temperature and low baryo-chemical potential. Heavy quarks are an important probe for the properties of this state of matter, since they are produced via hard partonic collisions at a very early stage and thus experience the complete evolution of the system. The production of open beauty hadrons is expected to be very sensitive to the density of the medium created in heavy-ion collisions due to the energy loss experienced by the parent parton (a beauty quark), which hadronizes into the beauty hadron. Their production can be studied in ALICE, e.g., by using semi-inclusive decays like BJ/ + X or BD0+X.
Activity: The student will analyse the data collected by the ALICE experiment in the 2nd LHC run and she/he will contribute to the development of the fitting procedure to extract the fraction of non-prompt J/ (coming from the decay of beauty hadrons) or non-prompt D0 mesons (also coming from the decay of beauty hadrons). From these fractions, by knowing the inclusive production of J/ (or D0 meson) already measured by ALICE, it would be possible to determine the production of beauty hadrons.

Tutor: Giuseppe Eugenio Bruno (

Preferred period: June-July

    Local Secretariat:
Tonio Silvestri
ph. +39 080 5442332
Bologna 10

3 Positions: ATLAS

Title: Boosted top identification within the ATLAS experiment at LHC

Description: The experiments at the LHC are now exploring the physics at the TeV scale. In this new energy regime, particles with large mass can be produced with a large momentum allowing access to kinematic regions never studied before. Boosted top quarks produced in this context are of primary interest but, since they decay products tend to overlap, at the moment the reconstruction algorithms developed in the low-energy era are not as efficient as they could be and a proper reconstruction of these jets would improve significantly the physics output of the researches ongoing at CERN. The ATLAS group of INFN-Bologna has a longstanding experience in the field of top quark physics, especially in the measurement of differential cross sections for top-antitop quark pair production. The incoming student will work on the development of tagging algorithms for boosted top quarks, with the aim to improve both the selection efficiency and the rejection of background in the unprecedented high energy and high pile-up regime, corresponding to the LHC proton-proton collisions at 13 TeV. The student will join the analysis team working on the boosted top quark analysis and will concentrate on the study of the performance of track-based jets with respect to the calorimetric jets for top quark identification in the very-high boost regime.

Tutor: Dr. Matteo Negrini (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October 2016


Title: Search of the Higgs boson in association with a top anti-top pair

Description: After the Higgs boson discovery in 2012 by both ATLAS and CMS collaborations it became clear that a precise understanding of the Brout-Englert-Higgs electroweak symmetry breaking was needed to better understand its properties and to find hints of physics beyond the Standard Model. Therefore, a precise measurement campaign of the Higgs boson in all the production modes and decay channels has started.
The Higgs boson production in association with a top-antiquark pair (ttH) is particularly interesting since it is the only production channel that couples directly at tree level the two heaviest elementary particles (the top quark and the Higgs boson) known up to now: the ttH vertex can be directly probed. Since the ttH production cross section is one with the lowest cross section, only upper limits were given in Run1 using the available statistics.
The ATLAS Bologna group gave substantial contributions in the ttH search in Run1 and is currently analyzing the 2015 LHC Run2 data. The candidate will work in close collaboration with experienced researchers in the background estimation and in the enhancement of signal optimization using Multivariate Analysis tools (like Neural Newtorks, Boosted Decision Trees, etc…).

Tutors: Antonio Sidoti (, Giulia Ucchielli (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October 2016


Title: Characterization of prototypes of silicon detectors in HV/HR-CMOS technology for large-area trackers

Description: The research program aims at prototyping an active CCPD (Capacitive Coupled Pixel Detector) by developing, testing and characterizing an HV/HR-CMOS design and its integration with a pixel detector chip for Readout. In view of the High Luminosity LHC (HL-LHC) project, experiments are studying upgrades of their tracking systems that will require several square meters of pixel detectors. Large area detectors might also be worth as imaging detectors at X-FEL, where high angular resolution could be achieved placing the detectors at large distance from the interaction point.
New technologies that reduce the cost and production-time of sensors and hybridization will be critical to develop the new systems in time, with required performance and inside the budgeted costs.
The student will perform measurements to fully characterize the first chip prototypes, including study of the amplifier-noise dependence on bias voltage, pixel cross talk and response to radioactive sources.
In addition, the impact of thin sensitive layers on tracking performance at LHC will be studied with simulated data.
Computing Knowledge: C/C++ and ROOT package.

Tutor: Carla Sbarra (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October 2016


3 Positions: CMS

Title: Study of the performances of H→ZZ→4l with an upgraded CMS detector

Description: The Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) is one of two general purpose particle detectors located at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Geneva, Switzerland. It produced the first direct evidence for the Higgs boson in summer 2012, when CMS and ATLAS jointly announced their discovery of a new massive boson. The CMS group in Bologna played a central role in this discovery, studying in particular the decay channel H→ZZ→4l (where l=e, μ), which has the distinct advantage of being very clean and therefore well distinguishable from the huge hadronic background. Since the discovery, further measurements of this boson's properties indicate that is consistent with being a Higgs boson. These studies will be continued with significantly higher precision with the much larger datasets that LHC will provide in the coming years. LHC will indeed be significantly upgraded in the future to deliver extremely high instantaneous luminosities ((HL-LHC phase), that, in a span of approximately 10 years, will yield a total integrated luminosity to ATLAS and CMS of 3000 fb-1, a factor of 100 larger than the dataset accumulated so far. In order to sustain and record data effectively at these very high luminosities, CMS will have to undergo a significant upgrade of many of its sub-detectors. The detector upgrades are being designed now based on the physics programme that CMS plans to follow at HL-LHC. The H→ZZ→4l is one of the flagship channels at HL-LHC and will be used to design and motivate many of the proposed CMS upgrades.
After a small series of introductory courses, the incoming student will work with a well established group of people of the CMS Bologna group to study the performances of the H→ZZ→4l analysis with some of the proposed detector upgrades for HL-LHC.

Tutor: Dr. Paolo Giacomelli (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October 2016


Title: Search for Z’→μ+μ- with the CMS detector data collected at Run 2

Description: The Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) is one of two general purpose particle detectors located at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Geneva, Switzerland. It produced the first direct evidence for the Higgs boson in summer 2012, when CMS and ATLAS jointly announced their discovery of a new massive boson. The CMS group in Bologna played a central role in this discovery, studying in particular the decay channel H→ZZ→4l (where l=e, μ).
In the spring of LHC will resume pp collisions, providing in 2016 ~20-30 fb-1 of integrated luminosity at a center-of-mass energy to 13 TeV. This center-of-mass energy opens up a new window of opportunity to discover signs of new physics beyond the predictions of the Standard Model. A very interesting possibility could be the existence of a heavier Z boson, called Z’, that is foreseen by some extensions of the Standard Model and that could be produced in high energy pp collisions with a relatively large cross-section. A distinctive final state could be Z’→μ+μ-, with two very high momentum muons. If a Z’ exists in the range accessible with the new energy of LHC, it could be discovered with a relatively low integrated luminosity, therefore possibly in the first few weeks of data taking, foreseen in the summer of 2016. Such a groundbreaking discovery would provide an unambiguous proof of the existence of physics beyond the Standard Model.
The CMS Bologna group has a very large experience in the study of muons, having built part of the muon spectrometer of CMS, and having performed many analyses of processes yielding muons in the final state.
After a small series of introductory courses, the incoming student will work with a well established group of people of the CMS Bologna group to analyse the first data collected in the summer of 2016, looking for the possible signature of Z’→2 muons.

Tutors: Dr. Paolo Giacomelli (, Dr. Simranjit Chhibra (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October 2016


Title: Study of Higgs boson pair production at FCC-hh at a center-of-mass energy of 100 TeV

Description: The Future Circular Collider study (FCC) explores different designs of circular colliders for the post-LHC era. In particular the FCC-hh would be a new proton-proton circular collider at the energy frontier. The current studies call for a center-of-mass energy of 100 TeV, with a luminosity equal or larger than that of HL-LHC. At these energies and luminosities the study of the Higgs boson self interaction would become extremely interesting through the study of the rare process of Higgs boson pair production. Using the decay channel HH->bbbar 4l one would have both a signal distinguishable from the background as well as a relatively high branching ratio. The very high instantaneous luminosity will however come at the expense of a very large amount of pile-up events superimposed over the interesting physics processes, and the detector will have to cope with extremely high particle rates and occupancy. The use of a fast simulation to study the effect of different detector choices on the analysis will be a very effective tool to determine the best detector design from a physics point of view. The Bologna group has already engaged in these studies using the DELPHES framework.
After a series of introductory courses the student will work with an established group of people to simulate different FCC-hh detector designs and technology options and to reconstruct and analyse di-Higgs events at these extreme conditions of energy and pile-up.

Tutor: Dr. Paolo Giacomelli (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October 2016


2 Positions: LHCb

Title: Search for Lepton Flavour Universality with charm mesons decays at LHCb

Description: The LHCb experiment has been designed to perform high precision measurements of the CKM quark mixing matrix as well as to perform high precision tests of the Standard Model by observing very rare decays of beauty and charm
hadrons and looking for hints of New Physics. Recent measurements in the semi-leptonic B-mesons decays revealed possible hints of Lepton Flavor (Universality) violation and then physics beyond the Standard Model. Analogous and complementary measurements can be performed in the decays of D-mesons at LHCb where several million decays have been collected during RUN-1 and RUN-2, exploiting the large ccbar cross-section in proton-proton collisions at the LHC.
The student will be involved in the study of D-meson decays which can probe Lepton Flavor Universality between the first two leptonic families with a neutrino in the final state escaping reconstruction, namely the D0->Kmunu and D0->Kenu.
An interesting observable is the ratio of the two decay rates, which is a robust measurement as most of the systematic uncertainties cancel out. The student, in strict contact with the Bologna LHCb group, will develop analysis tools commonly used in high energy physics with the aim of optimising selection algorithms to strongly suppress backgrounds and measuring with high precision muon and electron reconstruction efficiencies.
Computing Knowledge: Basic knowledge of Unix environment, C/C++ programming language and ROOT/ROOFIT package.

Tutor: Angelo Carbone (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October 2016


Title: Innovative fast timing pixel detector with embedded track finding capabilities.

Description: The research project aims at developing an innovative tracking detector, based on accurate time and position particle hit measurements. 
The detector we are studying would allow the full exploitation of flavour physics at the LHC operating at the High Luminosity (HL), in presence of high event pile-up.  The precise determination of the time of the track is the key feature needed to disentangle many overlapping events and enhance track trigger selection capabilities.  The student will perform the analysis of the response of a simulated pixel vertex detector, capable of exploiting a hit time resolution of the order of 20 ps, together with a hit position resolution better than 40 micron.  The new tracker shall maximise the physics potential of the LHCb upgrade, which will continue to play a leading role in the coming years.
Computing Knowledge: Python, C/C++ and ROOT/ROOFIT package.

Tutor: Umberto Marconi (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October 2016


1 position: AMS

Title: AMS data analysis: search for exotic particles

Description: The AMS experiment has been taking data on the International Space Station since May 2011, with a total number measured cosmic ray particles approaching 10 billion. Several kinds of exotic particles are being searched for by the Bologna Group participating in the analysis, among which fractionally charged particles (quarks) and high strangeness carrying particles (strangelets). The proposal of the research topic for the DOE program will cover the analysis of AMS data for the search of strangelets and the MonteCarlo simulation of the interaction of strangelets with the experimental apparatus.

Tutor: Andrea Contin (

Recommended period: September-October 2016


1 Position: Interdisciplinary activity (Biophysics)

Title: Electronic platform for cell-migration galvanotaxis

Description: Recently the electronics skills and experience of the INFN laboratory in Bologna have joined a research group dedicated to live cell migration, proliferation and control of membrane potential by the application of an electric field or flowing current. This mechanism, namely galvanotaxis, chiefly affects the response of normal and cancer cell growths. The proposal of the research topic for the DOE program will cover hardware, firmware, image analysis aspects and studies for optimizing the technical apparatus and the data acquisition chain to investigate the galvanotactic response.

Tutor: Alessandro Gabrielli (

Recommended period: June-July September-October 2016


Possibility of cheap accommodations (hotels, b&b, guesthouses, etc.)

Local secretariat:
Ms. Elena Amadei
Ms. Barbara Simoni

Catania 2

1 position: Alice

Title: Characterization of new families of monolithic pixel chips

Description: The Catania ALICE team is working on the design of the new ALICE Inner Tracking System detector which will be realized with a new generation of monolithic pixel detectors (MIMOSA and ALPIDE). A set-up is in place in our Institute (INFN, Sezione di Catania) to study the performances of the different prototypes. In particular, measurements of different parameters (for example, threshold and noise distribution, noise occupancy,…) of the last ALPIDE prototypes, both irradiated and not irradiated, as a function of the temperature are foreseen in the next months. The summer student will participate to these activities.

Tutor: Dr. Angela Badalà (, Dr. C. Petta

Recommended period: June-July, September-October


1 position: HPS (Dark Matter)

Title: Cosmogenic background measurements for Light Dark Matter search in a Beam-dump experiment

Dark Matter is one example of the existence of new physics beyond the Standard Model. For many aspects new weakly-interacting particles in the 10 GeV - 10 TeV mass scale is an attractive picture for Dark Matter. However, the lack of experimental evidence of new physics at the weak scale from LHC and from Dark Matter direct search demands an extension of the hunting ground at lower masses (1 MeV - 1 GeV).
Beam-dump experiments are ideally suited for discovering light dark matter particles which feel a new interaction carried out by a MeV-GeV mass U(1) gauge boson, the so-called Dark- or Heavy-photon.
The Catania group is actively participating in the Heavy Photon Experiment (HPS) running at Jefferson Lab, and is deeply involved in the design, construction and characterization of a detector prototype for a future Beam Dump eXperiment (BDX).
To quantify the cosmogenic-background rejection-capability of BDX and finalize the experimental setup design, a first prototype of the detector is currently running comics in Catania.

The student joining the Catania research group will experience research working on a small project, having the opportunity to deal with different aspects connected with these measurements, e.g. :

- Assembling and test of plastic scintillator detectors involving different technologies
- Characterization of different scintillator crystals
- Data Analysis and comparison with MC simulations

For further informations see:

Tutor: Marzio De Napoli (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October

  On request, possible accommodation at reduced cost in the
University Guesthouse and in the adjacent LNS guesthouse at 25 EUR/night.

Local contacts:
email: ph. +39-0953785209


1 position: LHCB

Title: The 40 MHz trigger-less DAQ system for the LHCb upgrade.

Description: The LHCb experiment will undergo a major upgrade during the second long LHC shutdown (2018 - 2019), with the goal to let LHCb collect an order of magnitude more data with respect to Run 1 and Run 2. The main bottleneck of the present LHCb trigger is the maximum read-out rate of 1 MHz. Apart from major sub-detector upgrades, the upgrade then foresees a full read-out into the DAQ, running at the LHC bunch crossing frequency of 40 Mhz, using an entirely software-based trigger. A high-throughput PCIe Generation 3-based read-out board has been designed for this purpose. The read-out boards will allow a cost-effective implementation of the DAQ by means of a high-speed PC network. The network-based DAQ system reads data fragments, performs the event building and transports data to the high-level software trigger at an estimated aggregate rate of ~32 Tbit/s. Possibile candidates for the high-speed network technology under study are Infiniband and Gigabit Ethernet. Different DAQ architectures can also be implemented, such as push, pull and traffic shaping with barrel-shifter. In order to explore and find the best combination, performance tests on different platforms and technologies are needed. We plan to perform large-scale tests also at HPC facilities, by means of a flexible event builder evaluator that will allow to explore different solutions.

Tutor: Francesco Giacomini (

Recommended Period: June-October 


1 position: Low Power Computing

Title: Porting and performance evaluation of real life application on low power computing systems at CNAF

Description: The embedded and high-performance computing sectors have in the past been very isolated and unaware of each other’s needs and technologies. Similar isolations have occurred between HPC and the mobile/tablets commodity markets.  We are now experiencing a very important convergence between markets, both in constraints and needs as well as in technologies. High computational demands, power consumption limitation, parallelism, heterogeneous computing and cost effectiveness are now driving constraints of both the HPC and embedded sectors. This convergence opens the way to the possibility of performing scientific computation on low power architecture originally developed for the embedded or mobile world. INFN is acquiring know how in building clusters based on low power System-on-Chips (SoCs) and in running scientific applications on such clusters. The applications range from synthetic benchmarks to real life use cases, in particular from the High Energy Physics domain. The activity deals with the porting, running and performance evaluation of these applications run in low power clusters. Comparison with traditional x86 architectures and computing accelerators such us GPGPU and Manycore systems will also be performed.

Tutor: Daniele Cesini (

Recommended period: June -October


1 position: CMS


Description: The CMS Experiment at LHC uses a distributed computing analysis model, where  a “task” is split into hundreds if not thousands jobs, sent to remote computing centers. The user-side software is CRAB3, a light-weight  interface to HTCondor. The proposed project consists in enhancing  CRAB3 capabilities in many possible directions:

  • Enabling the utilization of user data;
  • Tests with CRAB on new platform (INDIGO-DataCloud via Docker / virtual machines);
  • Test submission on novel computer architectures (like ARM clusters)

Tutor: Daniele Cesini (

Recommended period: June -October


Scientific Coordinator:
Cristina Vistoli - email:

Administrative Coordinator or Local Secretariat:
Alessandra Marches - email:
Ferrara 2

1 Position: LHCb RICH

Title:  The Ring Imaging Cherenkov (RICH) detector upgrade project of the LHCb experiment: R&D activities and test of radiation hardness on photo-detectors and electronics.

Description: LHCb is one of the main experiments collecting data at the Large Hadron Collider accelerator at CERN. Its primary goal is to study with high accuracy B and D decays to improve the knowledge of the Standard Model or to reveal the contributions of New Physics to the decay processes. One of the main features of the LHCb experiment is the capability to identify the particles produced in the final state. Several detectors are dedicated to this purpose. In particular the separation between pions, kaons and protons is provided by two Cherenkov imaging detectors (RICH-1 and RICH-2). The identification of muon particles is performed using a dedicated detector. LHCb will be upgraded in many of its sub-detectors after the Long Shutdown 2 (2019-2020): to cope with the luminosity increase the read-out electronics will be upgraded to 40 MHz and the detector geometry will be modified to reduce the occupancy. This will allow the data rate to be increased substantially. In the upgrade the upstream RICH-1 detector will retain its current C4F10 gas radiator, however the high occupancies mean that the aerogel radiator will be removed. The downstream RICH-2 CF4 gas radiator will remain unchanged. The HPD photon detectors and readout electronics will be replaced by new photo-detectors with external new 40 MHz readout electronics. The Ferrara University and INFN group is involved in both the RICH and Muon detectors.

Activities: The student, joining the Ferrara group in Summer 2016, will have the opportunity to participate to the different R&D activities: - test and characterization of novel photo-detectors - test and characterization of CMOS front-end electronics, including radiation hardness tests at European facilities - detector simulations 

Tutor: Massimiliano Fiorini (

Recommended period: June-July or July-August


1 Position: Geoneutrino (SNO+)

Geoneutrino flux at SNO+ and the geological formations surrounding SNOLAB.

Description: The SNO+ detector (Ontario, Canada) is a multipurpose kiloton-scale liquid scintillation detector aimed at performing low energy neutrino physics measurements. Designed as a retrofit of the former Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO) at SNOLAB, the detector is located in one of the Earth’s largest Archean cratons, characterized by a thick continental crust, which gives rise to a sizeable geoneutrino crustal signal rate. In particular, previous studies demonstrated the U and Th present in the rocks of the Huronian Supergroup and the Sudbury Basin, both in close proximity to the detector, constitute the primary source of the geoneutrino signal. The realization of a refined geochemical and geophysical model of the 25 km x 25 km crust surrounding the detector plays a crucial role in the discriminating power on the mantle signal as well as in the geoneutrino spectral shape reconstruction.

Activities: The candidate will be involved in the gamma ray measurements of about 100 rock samples coming from the 25 km x 25 km area surrounding the detector and in the statistical treatment of the data. After preparation, the samples will be measured in laboratory with Hyper-Pure Germanium detectors. The statistically significant dataset of the U and Th concentrations, obtained by the spectral analysis, will be treated with statistical arguments in order to perform a refined study of the probability density functions. Refined geostatistical processes can be performed with the study of the spatial correlation of U and Th abundances in the investigated area, with evaluation of the output uncertainties of the estimations. The obtained results will lead to the characterization of U and Th content of the crust surrounding the detector representing the main ingredient necessary to the prediction of the geoneutrino signal at SNO+.

Tutor: Dr. Fabio Mantovani (

Recommended period: June-October

  Cheap accommodation available in town or in the University guest house

Local Secretariat:
Paola Fabbri
ph. +39-0532-974280

Frascati National Laboratory


1 position: KLOE-2 at LNF

Title: Study of the quality of data collected with the KLOE-2 experiment at DAFNE.

The KLOE-2 experiment at the INFN Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati (LNF) is currently taking data at the upgraded e+e-  DAFNE collider.
For the very first time  the "crab-waist" concept - an interaction scheme, developed in Frascati, where the transverse dimensions of the beams and their crossing angle are tuned to maximize the machine luminosity - has been applied in presence of a high-field detector solenoid. Record performance in terms of 2 x 10^32 cm-2s-1 peak luminosity and 12 pb-1 maximum daily integrated luminosity were achieved with this innovative scheme of beam collisions  that will be employed in the upgrade of the B-factory currently under construction at the KEK Laboratory, in Japan, and is also considered a valid option in several future projects.
KLOE-2 represents the continuation of KLOE  with a new physics program mainly focused on KS, eta and eta' rare decays as well as on kaon interferometry and search for physics beyond the Standard Model. The new data taking campaign will allow to perform CPT symmetry and quantum coherence tests using neutral kaons with an unprecedented precision, high precision studies of gammagamma-physics processes like e+e- -> e+e- pi0 (gg->pi0),  and the search for new exotic particles that could constitute the dark matter, among the fields to be addressed.
The general purpose KLOE detector, composed by one of the biggest Drift Chamber ever built surrounded by a lead-scintillating fiber Electromagnetic Calorimeter among the best ones for energy and timing performance at low energies, undergone several upgrades including State-of-The-art cylindrical GEM detector:  the Inner Tracker. To improve its vertex reconstruction capabilities near the interaction region, KLOE-2 is the first  high-energy experiment using the GEM technology with a cylindrical geometry, a novel idea that was developed at LNF exploiting the kapton properties to build a transparent and compact tracking system.
To study gammagamma-physics the detector has been upgraded with two pairs of electron-positron taggers: the Low Energy Tagger (LET), inside the KLOE apparatus, and the High Energy Tagger (HET) along the beam lines outside the KLOE detector.

The student will be inserted in the collaboration activity, in particular in the study of the quality of the data collected with the upgraded detector, and helping in the data taking phase.

Tutor: Erika De Lucia (

Recommended period: June-July, September-October


2 Positions: MoonLIGHT-2 & SCF_Lab

Title: Space Research with the MoonLIGHT-2 experiment and the SCF_Lab test facility

Description: The space research activities of the SCF_Lab test facilities are describe at The goal of MoonLIGHT-2 (Moon Laser Instrumentation for General relativity High-accuracy Tests for the International Lunar Network – Phase 2) is the development, space characterization and deployment of 2nd generation laser retroreflectors for the sub-mm-precision orbit determination of the Moon through a laser-pulse time-of-flight measurement, in order to achieve a high-accuracy test of General Relativity and new theories of gravity. This discipline, called Lunar Laser Ranging (LLR), started 40 years ago, when the Apollo and Lunokhod missions deployed retroreflectors on the surface of the Moon. LLR data are freely available and provide the best overall test of General Relativity with a single experiment (weak and strong equivalence principle, PPN parameter beta, geodetic precession, deviations from the inverse-square law, time variation of the gravitational constant G, extensions of General Relativity). The experiment is an international collaboration between Italian and US institutions. The latter include: the University of Maryland at College Park (UMD), which was Principal Investigator of the 1st generation retroreflectors; the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, MA, USA (CfA), which has developed the powerful Planetary Ephemeris Program capable (among many other things) of accurately tracking the Moon orbit; the University of California at San Diego, CA, USA (UCSD), which leads the best LLR station, located in USA, called APOLLO (Apache Point Observatory LLr Operation)
We have four lunar landing mission opportunities with Moon Express Inc., the first one at the end of 2017. See also .
For Mars science (gravity, geodesy) and exploration we built and space-qualified INRRI-EDM/2016 (INstrument for landing/Roving laser Retroreflector Investigations) the first-ever laser retroreflector to be deployed on the surface of the red planet by the ESA/ASI ExoMars EDM 2016 mission. INRRI is a compact, lightweight, passive and maintenance-free array of laser retroreflectors of very long lifetime, installed on the external, zenith-facing surface of the ExoMars EDM, with unobstructed view to orbit. INRRI will enable the EDM to be laser-located from Mars orbiters operational either during the EDM lifetime and/or after the EDM end-of-life. INRRI is provided by ASI and INFN-LNF. The ExoMars EDM lander, dubbed "Schiaparelli" will be launched in March 2016.
See: and
The student will participate in the: (1) thermal-optical-vacuum test and data analysis of the new payload funded by INFN and NASA, at the world-unique INFN-LNF SCF_Lab infrastructure (Satellite/lunar/GNSS laser ranging and altimetry Characterization Facilities Laboratory); and/or (2) analysis of LLR data acquired from existing Apollo/Lunokhod payloads for precision gravity tests (with CfA – J. Chandler et al; UCSD – T. Murphy et al). Another major SCF_Lab activity is the SCF-Test of LAGEOS, the Laser GEOdynamics Satellites (with NASA-GSFC – S. Merkowitz at al).
1. Creation of the new industry-standard space test of laser retroreflectors for GNSS and LAGEOS, S. Dell'Agnello, G.O. Delle Monache, D.G. Currie, R. Vittori, C. Cantone, M. Garattini, A. Boni, M. Martini, C. Lops, N. Intaglietta, R. Tauraso, D.A. Arnold, M.R. Pearlman, G. Bianco, S. Zerbini, M. Maiello, S. Berardi, L. Porcelli, C.O. Alley, J.F. McGarry, C. Sciarretta, V. Luceri, T.W. Zagwodzki, J. Adv. Space Res. 47 (2011) 822–842.
2. A Lunar Laser Ranging Retroreflector Array for the 21st Century, D. Currie, S. Dell'Agnello, G. Delle Monache, Acta Astron. 68, 667– 680 (2011).
3. SCF_Lab brochure:

Tutors: Simone Dell'Agnello ( and/or Giovanni Delle Monache (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


1 position: MU2E

Title: Assembly and test of the Module 0 for the MU2E EM calorimeter

The candidate will work together with the MU2E LNF team to assemblyand test the module-0 for the MU2E calorimeter. This module 0 will consist of an array of 50 un-doped CsI crystals (34x34x200) mm**3
each one readout by 2 of our own custom package of Silicon Photomultipliers (SIPM). Each SIPM will be an array of 2x3 6x6 mm**2 cells with a pixel smaller than 50 micrometers. The SIPMs have a specific cover with Silicon Protection to extend their Particle Detection Efficiency (PDE) down to 300 nm in order to well match to the emission light of the CsI crystals (320 nm). The work will consist of the following steps:
- Quality assurance of the procured crystals (Light Yield, Longitudinal response uniformity, Slow component evaluation, emission time, radiation induced noise);
- Quality assurance of the procured SIPMs (Gain and Dark noise)
- Wrapping and quality control of the packaged crystals
- Mechanical assembly of the matrix
- Test of the Module-0 with Laser beam
- Test of the Module-0 at a cosmic ray telescope
- Test of the Module-0 with an electron beam from 80 to 140 MeV at BTF.

Software development of monitoring tools based on root is also expected.
DAQ or data analysis software knowledge is a plus for such a position.

Tutor: Dr. Stefano Miscetti (

Recommended period: September-October


3 Positions: Nanostructurs

Title: Nanosensors for biomedical applications 

Electrochemical DNA – sensors are one of the most promising tools with very diverse areas of application such as medical diagnostics, environmental pollutants monitoring, biological weapons defence etc. In spite of DNA – sensors already widely used in practice, they have a perspective for the improvement of functionality and cost – effectivity.  One of the important directions in this matter is the increasing selectivity and sensitivity of sensors in expense of enhancement of electric signal and target – probe hybridization stability. Another important direction is the improvement of the electrode effectivity and manufacturability. From this point of view the best choice is the polymer – CNT enhanced nanocomposites, combining these two important features. At the same time, the better understanding of molecular mechanisms behind the DNA and RNA hybridization on the surface of electric transducer, and polymer – CNT nanocomposites formation is relevant for the improvement of effectivity and manufacturability of DNA – sensors. The Student will carry out all-round activity in nanoscience, with a specific calling for technological applications, stemming from scientific achievements and with the help of a careful theoretical research and modeling activity.
The Student will also participate to the realization of the Nanomaterial (e.g. carbon nanotubes and graphene) that are synthesized in the nanotechnology laboratory, and the corresponding biosensor nano-devices, which he will  subsequently characterize and test. The student will engage in the Chemical Vapour Deposition of carbon nanotubes (CNT) and Graphene on catalytic substrates and/or in porous templates, as well as in the arc discharge synthesis of carbon nanotubes, without impurities and with a low density of defects. Purification and functionalization of carbon nanotubes are carried out by LNF team by physical and chemical methods.
Main references:
1.    "Biological interactions of carbon-based nanomaterials: From coronation to degradation"   Kunal Bhattacharya, Sourav P Mukherjee, Audrey Gallud, Seth C Burkert, Silvia Bistarelli, Stefano Bellucci, Massimo Bottini, Alexander Star, Bengt Fadeel,  Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology and Medicine, Available online 17 December 2015
2.    "Multiwalled carbon nanotube buckypaper induces cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in human leukemia cell lines through modulation of AKT and MAPK signaling pathways", Simona Dinicola, Maria Grazia Masiello, Sara Proietti, Pierpaolo Coluccia, Gianmarco Fabrizi, Alessandro Palombo, Federico Micciulla, Silvia Bistarelli, Giulia Ricci, Angela Catizone, Giorgio De Toma, Mariano Bizzarri, Stefano Bellucci, Alessandra Cucina, Toxicology in Vitro 7 (2015) 1298-1308
3.    "Collapse and hybridization of RNA: View from replica technique approach", Y Sh Mamasakhlisov, S Bellucci, Shura Hayryan, H Caturyan, Z Grigoryan, Chin-Kun Hu, The European Physical Journal E 38 (2015) 1-9.
4.    "Growth inhibition, cell-cycle alteration and apoptosis in stimulated human peripheral blood lymphocytes by multiwalled carbon nanotube buckypaper", O Zeni, A Sannino, S Romeo, F Micciulla, S Bellucci, MR Scarfi, Nanomedicine 10 (2015), 351-360
5.    "Differences in cytotoxic, genotoxic, and inflammatory response of bronchial and alveolar human lung epithelial cells to pristine and COOH-functionalized multiwalled carbon nanotubes", Cinzia Lucia Ursini, Delia Cavallo, Anna Maria Fresegna, Aureliano Ciervo, Raffaele Maiello, Giuliana Buresti, Stefano Casciardi, Stefano Bellucci, Sergio Iavicoli,  BioMed Research International,Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 359506, 14 pages
6.     "Targeted Nanodrugs for Cancer Therapy: Prospects and Challenges", Massimo Bottini, Cristiano Sacchetti, Antonio Pietroiusti, Stefano Bellucci, Andrea Magrini, Nicola Rosato, Nunzio Bottini, J. Nanosci. Nanotechnol 14 (2014) 98-114

Tutor: Stefano Bellucci (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


Title: Electron beam acceleration for advanced materials characterization 

With the advent of the era of graphene, the universally famous two-dimensional allotrope of carbon, with its lightweight, amazing strength and unsurpassed ability to conduct electricity and heat better than any other material, previously unconceivable technological opportunities are opening up in a manifold of various applicative areas, in the true spirit of enabling technologies. The use of graphene can be envisaged in
nanoelectronics, as a promising alternative to customary materials such as copper, which show
well-known limitations in their utilization at the nanometer scale, owing to the challenges of dealing with higher values of frequencies and smaller sizes in beyond state of the art applications. Features like tunable electronic properties may be exploited to realize, for instance, a microwave electronically tunable microstrip attenuator. Electronic systems intended for Aerospace and Aeronautics applications are requested to exhibit such high performances in terms of operating conditions and reliability, that the used materials must retain outstanding mechanical, thermal and electrical properties. New technological solutions must provide significant reduction of weight of parts and supports (such as electronic cases), realized with optimized shapes. A solution to such problems can be provided by exploiting the recent advances in Nanotechnology in the synthesis of the so-called nanocomposites, a class of composites where one or more separate phases have one dimension in the nanoscale (less than 100nm).
The Student will also participate to the Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy, and the Electron and atomic force microscopy, characterizations of the nanomaterials, e.g. graphene, nanotubes, and epoxy nanocomposites. The Student will become experienced with modelling and simulation of the CNT growth over catalyst patterned substrates and porous templates, along with the conductance properties of CNT/metal junctions, as well as in modelling CNT electron transport properties. The Student will engage in the realization and characterization of epoxy resin nanocomposites based on nanocarbon materials. and study their electrical and mechanical properties and the electromagnetic shielding they provide in the microwave frequency range.
Main references:
1.    "What does see the impulse acoustic microscopy inside nanocomposites?"   VM Levin, YS Petronyuk, ES Morokov, A Celzard, S Bellucci, PP Kuzhir,  Physics Procedia 70 (2015) 703-706
2.    "Microstructure, elastic and electromagnetic properties of epoxy-graphite composites", SS Bellucci, F Micciulla, VM Levin, Yu S Petronyuk, LA Chernozatonskii, PP Kuzhir, AG Paddubskaya, J Macutkevic, MA Pletnev, V Fierro, A Celzard, AIP Advances 5 (2015) 067137
3.    "Broadband Dielectric Spectroscopy of Composites Filled With Various Carbon Materials", Stefano Bellucci, Silvia Bistarelli, Antonino Cataldo, Federico Micciulla, Ieva Kranauskaite, Jan Macutkevic, Juras Banys, Nadezhda Volynets, Alesya Paddubskaya, Dmitry Bychanok, Polina Kuzhir, Sergey Maksimenko, Vanessa Fierro, Alain Celzard,  IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques,  63 (2015) 2024-2031
4.    "Nanocomposites of epoxy resin with graphene nanoplates and exfoliated graphite: Synthesis and electrical properties", A Dabrowska, S Bellucci, A Cataldo, F Micciulla, A Huczko, physica status solidi (b) 251 (2014), 2599-2602.
5.    "Heat‐resistant unfired phosphate ceramics with carbon nanotubes for electromagnetic application", Artyom Plyushch, Dzmitry Bychanok, Polina Kuzhir, Sergey Maksimenko, Konstantin Lapko, Alexey Sokol, Jan Macutkevic, Juras Banys, Federico Micciulla, Antonino Cataldo, Stefano Bellucci, physica status solidi (a) 211 (2014), 2580-2585
6.    "Multi-walled carbon nanotubes/unsaturated polyester composites: Mechanical and thermal properties study", MSI Makki, MY Abdelaal, S Bellucci, M Abdel Salam,  Fullerenes, Nanotubes and Carbon Nanostructures 22 (2014), 820-833

Tutor: Stefano Bellucci (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


Title: NanoElectromagnetics (microwave/RF/photonics)

We have experience in the frequency (energy)/time-domain full-wave multiphysics modeling of the combined electromagnetic-coherent transport problem in carbon-based (graphene, CNT) nano-structured materials and devices. The core concept is that while the advancement of research in this area heavily depends on the progress of manufacturing technology, still, the global modeling of multi-physics phenomena at the nanoscale is crucial to its development. Modeling, in turn, provides the appropriate basis for design. The bridge between nanosciences and the realized circuits can be achieved by using the panoply of microwave/RF engineering at our disposal. From the theoretical models and techniques, we produced efficient software for the analysis and design.
In our models, the quantum transport is described by the Schrödinger equation or its Dirac-like counterpart, for small energies. The electromagnetic field provides sources terms for the quantum transport equations that, in turn, provide charges and currents for the electromagnetic field. In the frequency-domain, a rigorous Poisson-coherent transport equation system is provided, including electrostatic sources (bias potentials). Interesting results involve new concept-devices, such as Graphene-Nano-Ribbon (GNR) nano-transistors and multipath/multilayer GNR circuits, where charges are ballistically scattered among different ports under external electrostatic control. Further examples are given by the simulation of cold-cathodes for field emission based on graphene and by the analysis of optical emission/absorption by single or few layers GNR.
Recently, we began to work on the model of the graphene/CNT-metal transition and related equivalent circuits models, ii) the inclusion of thermal effects in graphene/CNT, e.g. as deriving from ballistic path reduction due to phonon scattering and as arising at the contact between graphene and silicon dioxide.  
In the time-domain, we now avail a novel Schrödinger/Dirac-based transmission line matrix (TLM) solver for the self-consistent analysis of the electromagnetic-coherent transport dynamics in realistic environments. It is highlighted that the self-generated electromagnetic field may affect the dynamics (group velocity, kinetic energy etc.) of the quantum transport. This is particularly important in the analysis of time transients and in the describing the behavior of high energy carrier bands, as well as the onset of non-linear phenomena due to impinging external electromagnetic fields. We are now capable of modelling THz carbon-based emitters/detectors, CNT-enabled traveling wave (TW-CNT) devices, and the carbon-metal transition; we are exploiting novel properties and devices based on frequency multiplication, graphene gyrotropic effects, photoconductive effects.
The Student's activity we will be focusing on:
•    Multiphysics Schrödinger/Dirac-based modeling of the electromagnetic-coherent transport phenomena of the graphene/CNT devices. Microwave and Terahertz circuit characterization stemming from the above  analysis in a form  suitable for design.
•    Models of the graphene/CNT-metal transition. Their equivalent circuits models.
•    Inclusion of thermal effects in graphene/CNT (e.g. the contact between graphene and silicon dioxide). Their circuit models in system characterization.
•    Characterization and validation of electromagnetic/quantum-mechanics properties of carbon nanostructures.
•    Electromagnetic characterization of carbon-based foams. Shielding EM interference in chaotic environments.
Main references:
1.    "Spatial dispersion effects upon local excitation of extrinsic plasmons in a graphene micro-disk"   Davide Mencarelli, Stefano Bellucci, Antonello Sindona, Luca Pierantoni,  Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics 48 (2015), 465104
2.    "Broadband microwave attenuator based on few layer graphene flakes", Luca Pierantoni, Davide Mencarelli, Maurizio Bozzi, Riccardo Moro, Stefano Moscato, Luca Perregrini, Federico Micciulla, Antonino Cataldo, Stefano Bellucci, IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques,  63 (2015) 2491-2497
3.    "Applications of Graphene at Microwave Frequencies", Maurizio Bozzi, Luca Pierantoni, Stefano Bellucci, Radioengineering 24 (2015) 661-669.
4.    "Sharp variations in the electronic properties of graphene deposited on the h-BN layer", DG Kvashnin, S Bellucci, LA Chernozatonskii, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 17 (2015) 4354-4359
5.    "Graphene-based electronically tuneable microstrip attenuator", L Pierantoni, D Mencarelli, M Bozzi, R Moro, S Bellucci, Nanomaterials and Nanotechnology 4 (2014), 4-18
Tutor: Stefano Bellucci (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


2 Positions: Nautilus

Title: Long term data analysis of the Nautilus comic-ray veto system

Description: Since 1993 the Nautilus Gravitational Wave resonant antenna has been equipped with a cosmic-ray veto system in order to avoid spurious signals able to simulate gravitational wave burst. The cosmic-ray system, consisting of layers of streamers tubes placed above and below the gravitational wave antenna, has taken data continuously for 19 years. The objective of job will consist in participating to the analysis of the long term data collected in this large period.

Tutors: Giovanni Mazzitelli (

Recommend period: June-July 


Title:  Light dark matter search in Nautilus gravitational wave antenna data

Description: The Nautilus resonant mass detector for gravitational wave can probe dark matter moduli foreseen by the string theory with frequencies around 1 kHz. Nautilus data cover a period of about 20 years and their analysis, objective of the proposed job, can contribute to put at least a better upper limit to such light dark matter candidates.

Tutors: Giovanni Mazzitelli (

Recommend period: June-July 

13-21 August Free accommodation in the Laboratory's guest house

Scientific Coordination:
Catalina Curceanu
ph. +39 06 94032321 - email:
Maria Cristina D'Amato
ph. +39-06-94032373 - email:

Administration and Logistic:
Maria Luisa Bontempi - Administration Office (ph. +39-06-94032554 - email:
Patrizia Fioretti - Personnel Office (ph. +39-06-94032595 - email:
Gianluca Dalla Vecchia- Visitor's Office (ph. +39-06-94032227 - email:

Genova 4

2 positions: ATLAS

Title: Development of Pixel detectors for the ATLAS Upgrade at HL-LHC

Description: The upgrade program for LHC is under study with the aim to increase the integrated luminosity by a factor of 10 (High Luminosity LHC – HL-LHC). The present detectors of ATLAS have been designed according to the rates and radiation dose expected at the nominal LHC luminosity and the Inner Tracker system will be completely replaced for the HL-LHC. In particular the Pixel detector collaboration is performing R&D’s to develop sensors with smaller and thinner pixels. The new design and technologies for sensors will address radiation doses up to 2x1016 1 MeV neq/cm2 or active sensor technologies using traditional IC technologies. Sensors as 3D and HV-CMOS are amongst the candidates for the upgrade of the Pixel detector. Genova, involved since 20 years in the ATLAS pixel detector, is working on both sensor technologies and upgrades of the interconnections (bump-bonding, gluing) between the electronics and the sensors. Development of the system test and the data readout to test the devices is also part of the activity. The student will work in the Genova laboratory on characterization of these technologies.

Tutor: Claudia Gemme (, Paolo Morettini (

Recommend period: June-July or September-October


Title: Development and Optimization of Real-Time Identification of b-jets for the ATLAS Experiment

Description: The ATLAS Run 2 operating conditions, leading to a large number of interaction per collision and increased jet spectrum hardness, pose strong optimization requirements on trigger strategies meant to select hadronic final states.
The b-jet trigger selection, in particular, required a large redesign effort, which introduced at least two major changes w.r.t. Run 1 operation. In order to be able to process a larger rate of jet candidates, the configuration of the track reconstruction steps was completely rewritten, allowing a two-step approach in which the primary vertex is reconstructed with coarser tracking information, which is then refined for final tagging purposes. The tagging algorithms have been, instead, aligned with those developed by the offline flavor tagging group, granting a larger rejection against light jets, a stronger correlation with selections at analysis level and an easier software maintenance.
The Genova Group was deeply implicated in these developments, but also in the optimization of the trigger strategy for channels with many b-jets in the final states, such as searches of the Higgs boson in the "VBF H->bb”channel.
All the above mentioned developments, after being first tested in 2015 data taking, require more optimization and characterization for the rest of Run 2 operation. The student will work in the Genova Group along with experts participating in this effort.

Tutor: Carlo Schiavi (, Fabrizio Parodi (


2 positions: JLAB12 experiment

Title n.1: The Forward Tagger for CLAS12: detector calibration and partial wave analysis

Title n.2: Light Dark Matter search at Jefferson Lab

Description: The JLAB12 experiment includes all INFN-Italy activity at Jefferson Lab (US).  The Genova Group is deeply involved in the MesonEx program, aiming for discovery of hybrid mesons, and in new experiments searching for light dark matter. Within MesonEx we have built the Forward Tagger (FT), an extension of the CLAS12 detector,  composed by an electromagnetic calorimeter (FT-Cal), a hodoscope (FT-Hodo) and a tracker (FT-Trck). The FT-Cal has been designed in Genova and it is now in the test phase at Jefferson Lab.  Cosmic ray data recorded with the FT-Hodo and FT-Cal are being analyzed to asses the detector performance and perform the energy and time calibration. The physics analysis of the MesonEx program involves complicated partial wave analysis of the final states. To match the demanding requirements of the experiment, a full simulation-reconstruction chain for a specific reaction has been developed by using sophisticated computing tools, e.g. GPU, under the supervision of the theory group of INFN-Genova and in contact with the JPAC group at JLab. Search for physics beyond the Standard Model can be carried out with precise and GeV-energy-range  experiments. Failure in direct observation of Dark Matter in the 10 GeV - 10 TeV mass range suggests to extend the hunting territory at lower masses (1 MeV - 1 GeV) opening up new opportunities for accelerator based experiments. Light dark matter fermions and bosons, carriers of a new interaction, are actively searched for in several experiments running at Jefferson Lab (APEX, HPS, BDX, Dark Light ...). Presently, the Genova Group is leading the R&D program for the new Beam Dump eXperiment (BDX) which is being proposed at Jefferson Lab as new facility for light dark matter search. The ongoing activity involves both simulation studies for the optimization of the experiment layout and R&D on scintillator crystals that are proposed for the realization of a detector with 1 cubic meter, 5 tons active volume. Within these frameworks we can provide two summer-student activities, one related to the Meson-Ex experiment and the other on Light Dark matter search.
For further information see:

Tutor: Marco Battaglieri (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October

mid- August Possibility of cheap accommodation in University dorm (200 Euros/month) or Bed&Breakfast (approximately from 250 to 500 Euros/month).

Local Secretariat:
Elisa Carnevali
ph. +39-010-3536241

Gran Sasso National Laboratory

1 position: LUNA experiment

Title: Cross section measurement in underground laboratory.

Description: in the framework of LUNA experiment, the student will:
- take part in the direct measurement of the nuclear cross section of astrophysics interest;
- approach gamma spectroscopy and data analysis.

Tutor: Iza Kochanek (


2 positions: SABRE and BOREXINO experiments

Title: Underground installation of SABRE / Scintillation purification and plant upgrade.

Description: The student will take part in the preparation of the underground installation for SABRE, namely scintillator vessel for the veto and crystal insertion system. The student will also work on the scintillation purification plant upgrade in Borexino. The two activities are related due to the fact that SABRE scintillator vessel will make use of scintillator from the Borexino plant.

Tutor: Andrea Ianni (


1 position: XENON experiment

Title: The XENON1T Dark Matter Experiment.

Description: The student will take part in the data taking and calibration of the 'muon veto' system for the XENON1T direct Dark Matter search experiment. First data of the double phases TPC will be analyzed.

Tutor: Valter Fulgione ( or

Open 24/7 nearby the Lab or downtown

Scientific Coordinator:
Dr. Alba Formicola - email: (

Administrative Coordinator:
Dr. Vincenzo Fantozzi
ph. +39 0862 437 236
fax +39 0862 437 218

Legnaro National Laboratory

2 positions

Title: Innovative surface treatments of superconducting cavities for new generation colliders

Description: Superconducting cavities are the heart of a particle accelerator and new colliders generation  ask for large numbers of SRF cavities. Reduction of fabrication costs becomes a main goal in making these machines affordable. The LNL at INFN disposes of a unique know how in cavity fabrication, that consists in producing seamless cavities and in sputtering Niobium onto copper. Recently our group has found an important technique to reach high quality cavity performances: the deposition of high purity thin films sputtered inside copper resonators. The candidate will have the possibility to learn the fundamentals of cavity technology, will take care of processing the cavities and will help in automating and controlling the processes.
The student will learn the basic of surface treatments and cavity fabrication technology.

Tutors: Enzo Palmieri, Cristian Pira

Preferred period: June-July


Title: Study of the heat fast removal from high intensity targets for the production of radioisotopes

The project is devoted to the design and construction of a high efficiency cyclotron target fot 99mTc production with maximum level of heat dissipation from the target. It includes the design and engineering of all the parts of the target including deposition of 100Mo target material, the use of high thermal conductivity material for baking plate and cooling system with liquid metal coolant.
The candidate will have the possibility to study and develop the target and learn the deposition techniques, as the magnetron sputtering.

Tutors: Enzo Palmieri, Hanna Skliarova

Preferred period: June-July

mid-August Free lodging at LNL guest house is available

Scientific Coordinator:
Dr. Fabiana Gramegna

Additional information is available at LNL website:


Local secretariat:
Dr. Luisa Pegoraro
ph. +39 049-8068.342


1 position: NEWCHIM

Title: Characterization of the VLSI frontend electronics of the FARCOS telescopes

Description: In the framework of the construction of a novel Femtoscope Array for Correlation and Spectroscopy, named FARCOS [1], featuring high angular and energy resolution and able to address several open cases in nuclear physics, we (at INFN-Milano) are in charge of the development of a multi-channel double-polarity selectable-gain VLSI frontend to be coupled to the Double-Sided Silicon Strip Detectors of FARCOS. The student will collaborate in the qualification of the 32-channel frontend boards, equipped with the ASICs, the line drivers and the slow-control. In particular he/she will collaborate in the final board assembly, will study the performance of the system (linearity, energy resolution, cross-talk) and will take part in the design of the final version of the slow-control interface. The student will have the possibility to shape the focus of the research activity according to his/her skills and interests.
The student will have the possibility to work in a real research lab, with hands-on approach combined with a strong theoretical background in the field of radiation detectors and low-noise frontend electronics, sharing the daily lab life with PhD students, junior and experienced researchers.
Basic knowledge of analog electronics is preferred, no knowledge of nuclear physics is required.
[1] FARCOS TDR, available on-line:

Tutor: Chiara Guazzoni (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October



Possibility of using
Politecnico di Milano accomodation facilities

Local secretariat:
Luciana Brogiato
Silvia Rognoni

Napoli 5

1 position: G-2

Title: Measurement of the anomalous magnetic moment of the muon.

Description: The experiment g-2 (E989) is in a mounting stage at Fermilab. The data taking is expected by beginning of 2017. The experiment aims to measure the anomalous magnetic moment of the muon with an improved experimental uncertainty, namely a factor of 4 compared to the previous experiment E821 at BNL (ie 0.14 ppm ). Within the experiment the Italian INFN group has the responsibility of building the monitoring system of the 24 electromagnetic calorimeters. To this aim, an on-line calibration system made by a laser and an optical system capable of providing reference signals to the calorimeters is going to be built.
The group of INFN - Naples is engaged on two themes: 1) design and implementation of the laser control. It is a crucial and delicate task because the entire system must operate during data taking and with different modes; 2) monitoring and stabilization of the reference signals. Given the high precision required to the system, it is mandatory a deep knowledge of the various sources of uncertainty. The activities that will be undertaken by the scholarship will focus on:
a) characterization of the calibration system, in view of its full operation;
b) data analysis and development of calibration software.

Tutor: Michele Iacovacci (

Recommended periods: June-July or September-October


1 position: SHIP

Title: Search for hidden particles and tau neutrinos in the SHIP experiment

Description: SHIP is a new general-purpose fixed target facility, proposed at the CERN SPS accelerator. A dedicated detector downstream of the target will probe the existence of long-lived exotic particles with masses below 10 GeV/c2 foreseen in many extensions of the Standard Model. A neutrino detector will study tau neutrino cross-section and observe for the first time the tau anti-neutrino.

Activity: The activity will consist of studying the neutrino detector performances in the search for tau neutrinos and anti-neutrinos. The detector will be hybrid, using nuclear emulsions and electronic detectors for the time stamp of the events and the measurement of the muon momentum. The emulsion target is based on the Emulsion Cloud Chamber technology fruitfully employed in the OPERA experiment. The Emulsion Cloud Chamber will be placed in a magnetic field, with the so-called Compact Emulsion spectrometer, a few cm thick chamber, for the charge and momentum measurement of hadrons. This will provide the leptonic number measurement also in the hadronic tau decay channels.

Tutor: Giovanni De Lellis (

Recommended periods: June-July or September-October


3 positions: CIRCE

Title: Nuclear physics in astrophysics and applications

Description: CIRCE (Center for Isotopic Research on Cultural and Environmental heritage) at the University of Naples 2 – INNOVA, Caserta, Italy is equipped with a 3MV Pelletron accelerator laboratory, and other laboratories (stable isotope mass spectrometry, radiochemistry, chemistry, low background counting, laser spectroscopy) devoted to basic and applied research. At CIRCE, INFN carries out a research program on low energy nuclear physics based on the recoil mass separator ERNA (European).Recoil separator for Nuclear Astrophysics) and a scattering chamber equipped with an array of detectors for charged particle spectroscopy.
INFN is also collaborating with the University of Naples 2 on the application of nuclear techniques to material and environmental science, in the framework of a project aiming to the realization of a large neutrino detector in the Mediterranean Sea (KM3Net).

The activity foreseen in the framework of the DOE-INFN summer school will be organized in modules focused on different aspects of Nuclear Physics:
1. Experimental nuclear astrophysics (3 weeks, tutors: A. Di Leva, L. Gialanella). The measurement of the astrophysical important reaction 12C(4He,g)16O with ERNA requires the development of a new helium jet
target and preliminary measurements to identify the best experimental conditions. Students will be involved in its commissioning, including energy loss and acceptance measurements.
2. Nuclear theory (1 week, tutor: L. Coraggio, N. Itaco). Basic theoretical methods and computational tools used for shell-model configuration mixing calculations will be presented with the aim of
calculating observables such as binding energies, excitation energies, electromagnetic transitions, beta decay and spectroscopic factors, focusing attention on nuclei of astrophysical interest. The emphasis will
be on a "hands-on" use of computer codes.
3. Material and device characterization for underwater neutrino experiments (Km3) (2 weeks, tutor: F. Marzaioli, P. Migliozzi). At CIRCE, INFN is starting a new laboratory to mount and test the detectors for KM3Net using a novel approach based on nuclear techniques. Students will participate to the feasibility tests and first measurements.
4. Accelerator Mass Spectroscopy (AMS) (2 weeks, tutors: R. Buompane, F. Terrasi). AMS allows the measurement of isotopic ratios with extreme sensitivity, that makes it a powerful tool for environmental monitoring.
Students will participate to an environmental control program of the environmental impact of nuclear power plants using AMS of actinides.

Contact person: Lucio Gialanella (

Recommended periods: June-July

Students will lodge at the University guesthouse in Caserta
Info: DOE-INFN Summer school link at


Possible cheap accommodation in B&B/Hostels in town centre and/or apartments shared with other students (Via Terracina, Napoli - mob.:+39 347.6503334).



University guesthouse in Caserta (CIRCE)


Local Secretariat:
Maria Arienzo
ph. +39 081 676186

Padova 4

1 Position: Auriga

Title: Study of dilatons effects in the 12years Auriga data

Description: According to the theoretical proposal published in January 2016 by the article “Sound of Dark Matter: Searching for Light Scalars with Resonant-Mass Detectors” Phys. Rev. Lett. 116, 031102, we have realized a monochromatic analysis (1 mHz of frequency resolution) about 20 days of data on defining an upper limit about this affect in the Auriga detector. It is possible to optimize the analysis on other time periods on looking in particular for seasonal variations and studying potential gain on making time correlation with other detectors.
The candidate will join our analysis group devoted to the study of this tiny effect in Auriga on using the Cloud Padue-Area, she/he will have the opportunity to contribute effectively to some of the aspects needed to perform such an interesting analysis, for this knowledge about C++, FFT and data analysis are welcome.
Possible accommodation in student housing (250-300 euro / month)

Tutor: Luca Taffarello
Secretary: Cristina Miletti - contact her for the flight ticket

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


2 Positions:

Title: Simulation of the neutron and gamma fields in the neutron experimental hall at the SPES accelerator at the INFN Legnaro National Laboratory.

Description: The 70 MeV proton cyclotron of the SPES project at the INFN Legnaro National Laboratorty will be used also to produce intense neutron beams. A dedicated hall will host the neutron beams. At present three beam lines are under study: an atmospheric like line, a monochromatic line and a thermal line.
The student will be involved in the simulation of the gamma and neutron fields inside the experimental hall. Simulations are based on the FLUKA and MCNP codes

Tutors: Dario Bisello, Luca Silvestrin
Secretary: Cristina Miletti - contact her for the flight ticket

Recommended period: June-September


Title: Study of the radiation effects on electronic devices fabricated in a deep scaled 28 nm CMOS technology.

Description: Resistance at very high radiation fields is mandatory for the electronics and detectors for the present and future experiments at high energy/high luminosity accelerators.
Deep scaled CMOS technologies are the preferred technologies to fabricate the electronics for such environments because of the thin oxide layers.
The student will be involved in the electrical characterization of simple electronic devices fabricated in a 28 nm CMOS technology. The characterization will be performed before and after irradiation with X-ray and low energy protons to optimize the radiation hardness of the technology under study.

Tutors: Dario Bisello, Serena Mattiazzo
Secretary: Cristina Miletti - contact her for the flight ticket

Recommended period: June-September


1 Position: LHCb RICH

Title: R&D for the Upgrade of the LHCb RICH Detector

Description: The student will participate in the R&D and and the characterization of the LHCb-RICH photon detectors for the LHCb upgrade.
The LHCb experiment has been designed to study b-hadrons in pp collisions at the LHC. In LHCb the hadron identification plays a key role in most of analyses for example two-body charmless b-hadron decays, CP-violation in the Bs0 system, measurement of the unitary triangle angle gamma of the CKM matrix through the study of B± -->DK± decays. One of the key capabilities of the particle identification system is the separation of pions and kaons, which is provided by the Ring Imaging Cherenkov (RICH) system.
During the 2018 LHC shutdown the LHCb will be upgraded in order to make efficient use of the higher luminosities and event rates. The data readout system will be replaced by one capable of 40Mhz readout rate. For this reason the front-end electronics and the photon detectors of the RICH  system will be replaced with a new system capable of handling the upgraded readout and event rate. The HPD photon detectors will be replaced with Multianode Photomultipliers and the RICH1 optics will be modified.
The student activity will be focused on the extraction of the PMT parameters from the pulse height distribution using a custom data acquisition chain and the analysis of the cumulative data.

Tutors: Gabriele Simi (
Secretary: Sandra Calore - contact her for the flight ticket

Recommended period: June-July or September-October

  Possible accommodation in student housing (250-300 euro / month)

Local Secretariat: 
Sandra Calore - email:

Cristina Miletti - email:


Pisa 3

1 position: Theoretical Nuclear Physics

Title: Nuclear electroweak currents in the chiral effective field theory approach: applications to reactions involving few-nucleon systems

Description: Chiral effective field theory is a formulation of quantum chromodynamics (QCD) in terms of effective degrees of freedom suitable for low-energy nuclear physics: pions and nucleons. Whitin this approach, we propose to develop a method to construct consistently with the nuclear interaction the two-body weak current operators, necessary to study any nuclear reaction which involves the weak interaction. The electromagnetic current and charge operators have been already derived up to the third
order in the chiral expansion, while such a derivation is still
missing for the weak axial current and charge operators. We plan to fill this gap, and to apply the derived weak operators to processes like the neutrino capture on tritium (used to reveal neutrinos from the big-bang) and the weak proton capture by proton (the pp reaction).

Tutors: Laura E. Marcucci (, Alejandro Kievsky (, Michele Viviani (

Recommended Period: June-July


1 position: FPGA

Title: High-performance track pattern recognition with specialized processors based on high-speed FPGA.

Description: Charge particle reconstruction is one of the most demanding computational tasks found in High Energy Physics, and it becomes increasingly important to perform it at very high speed and on very big data sets. Our group has a long history of success in design specialized electronics processors for track reconstruction in real-time, and we now are pursuing an ambitious  long-term goal of making track reconstruction happen transparently as part of the detector readout ("detector-embedded tracking").  We are currently building a prototype system based on a massively parallel pattern-recognition algorithm, inspired by studies of the processing of visual images by the brain as it happens in nature ('RETINA algorithm'). Our specialized processor is based on current state-of-the-art, high-speed/high-bandwidth digital devices and has the potential of high-quality tracking in large HEP detectors with unprecedentedly small latencies.

Activity: The student will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience on a very powerful custom FPGA system recently installed in our laboratory, programming the system to perform various benchmark tests of high-speed tracking, preparing input data and interpreting the results, and comparing results with traditional software. The activity will be performed under the continuous guidance of the system developers, and will allow the student to become familiar with high-end digital electronics technology, and methodology of track reconstruction in high energy physics.
Some basic experience with code development is recommended.

Tutor: Riccardo Cenci (

Recommended period: June-July


1 position: VIRGO

Title: Development of data analysis techniques for gravitational radiation detection

Description: The search for gravitational waves is being pursued at present with large interferometers in Europe and US. Virgo is the interferometric gravitational wave detector, located at the European Gravitational Observatory in Cascina (Pisa).

The program will give the possibility to participate to the developement and application of data analysis software for the search of gravitational waves of two different kind: gravitational wave stochastic background and continuous sources.
Another possibility is to contribute to a project about the discovery and characterization of noise correlated between interferometers, which can be an important issue for stochastic background detection.

Tutor: Giancarlo Cella (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


Local Secretariat:
Dr. Lucia Lilli
ph. +39 050 2214 327 -

Roma 4

1 position: MEG experiment

Title: Commissioning of the MEG-II gas monitoring chamber and cluster timing feasibility study

Description: The MEG-II collaboration is carrying on a leading experiment for the search of New Physics in the charged Lepton Flavor Violating decay mu -> e gamma. The upgraded MEG-II detector will start physics data taking in 2017 for a period of three calendars years at the Paul Scherrer Institute near Zurich (Switzerland). The student will work with the members of the Rome group in the test beam of the gas monitoring chamber of the experiment which will be held at the Beam Test Facility of the INFN Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati and will be involved both in the hardware and in the data analysis work. The purpose of the test is to commission the detector that will be transported at PSI at the end of the year and to study the ultimate spatial resolution achievable with a high band-width electronics which allows to separate the ionization clusters produced in the chamber (cluster counting/timing).

Tutors: Francesco Renga (, Cecilia Voena (

Recommended period: June-July OR September-October


1 position: Darkside experiment

Title: Study of the sensitivity of a Liquid Argon Time Projection Chamber to the directional detection of dark matter signals.

Description: The direct search for dark matter interactions on nuclei is one of the main goals of astro-particles physics in the Gran Sasso Underground Laboratory. A future large experiment (DS20K) using as a target several tons of liquefied depleted argon is under advanced design status. A key feature that is desired for a future generation experiment is the capability of detecting the incoming direction of the dark matter particles, that are expected to come primarily from a distinct direction in space. The student will be involved in simulation studies and in data analysis from a dedicated experiment designed to prove for the first time a directional sensitivity in a Liquid Argon dark matter detector.

Tutors: Marco Rescigno (, Stefano Giagu (

Recommended period: June-July


2 positions: PADME

Title: Dark photon searches with positron and electron fixed target experiments at the Frascati BTF

Description: Massive photon-like particles are predicted in many extensions of the Standard Model. They have interactions similar to the photon, are vector bosons, and can be produced together with photons. The PADME experiment aims at searching for the dark photon (A’) in the e+e−→γA’ process in a positron-on-target experiment, exploiting the positron beam of the DAΦNE BTF, produced by the linac at the Laboratori Nazionali di Frascati, INFN.
In one-two year of running a sensitivity in the relative interaction strength down to 10−6 is achievable, in the mass region from 1 MeV<MA’<22.5 MeV.
The experiment is due running in 2018 and is now starting its construction phase.
The Rome team is responsible for simulation and DAQ system. The student will work on the Monte Carlo, on the optimization of the layout, sensitivity studies, and detector performance.
Required knowledg:e
(1) basic software and programming (C and C++preferred), statistics, basic particle physics

Tutor: Paolo Valente (

Recommended period: September-October

11-22 August   

Scientific Coordinator:
Dr. Shahram Rahatlou
ph. +390649914357 - email:

Administrative Coordinator or Local Secretariat:
Dr. Mauro Mancini
ph. +390649914318 - email:

Roma Tor Vergata 3

2 positions: ATLAS

Title: Search for new particles from Exotics Models

Description: The main goal of Run2 data-taking at LHC is the search of new physics and new particles: are these particles long-lived?
This study  will focus on how to trigger and look for them in the ATLAS experiment.
Title: New detection techniques for high time resolution
Description: Cosmic ray and test-beam studies of new gas and solid-states detectors, read out with a new generation of front-end electronics with the ambitious goal of reaching a 10ps time resolution.

Tutor: Anna Di Ciaccio (

Recommended period: June-July


1 position: VIRGO

Title: Development of instrumentation techniques for gravitational radiation detection

Description: The gravitational wave astronomy is being pursued at present with large interferometers in Europe and US. Virgo is the interferometric gravitational wave detector, located at the European Gravitational Observatory in Cascina (Pisa).
The program will give the possibility to participate to the activity carried out in the Tor Vergata University: experimental and data analysis activities, use and developments of simulation tools.

Tutor: Viviana Fafone (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October

  Possibility of cheap accommodations

Local Secretariat:
Carla Felici
ph. +39 06 7259 4570

South National Laboratory 7

1 position

Title: Cosmogenic background study for Light Dark Matter search

Description: Over the past years and decades, an enormous amount of evidence has been found for the existence of invisible or Dark Matter (DM). Detecting (or creating) DM is key in determining its properties and the role of dark matter in the formation of structure in the universe. Recent theoretical work has highlighted the motivations for light sub-GeV dark matter candidates that interact with ordinary matter through light mediator particles. In particular, some studies have shown that beam dump experiments can be several order of magnitudes more sensitive than dark matter direct detection in the MeV-GeV mass region.

Starting from these results an international collaboration wrote a Letter of Intent presenting the MeV-GeV dark matter discovery potential for a 1 m^3 detector placed downstream of the electrons beam-dump of the highest intensity Jefferson Laboratory experimental Hall. The experiment (Beam-Dump eXperiment or BDX) proposes to measure dark matter particles produced by the electron beam in the dump, passing through surrounding shielding material, and depositing visible energy inside the detector by scattering off target particles or (if unstable) by decaying inside the detector volume.

Beating down the cosmogenic background is crucial for beam dump experiments. For this reason, an original study of cosmogenic background with a comparison between simulations and measurements is running in Catania. The LNS group is actively participating in the BDX experiment and is working in the cosmogenic background study with a first prototype of the detector.

The student joining the LNS research group will experience research working on this project, in particular on:

- Assembling and characterization of prototype detector
- Cosmogenic background study (data acquisition and data analysis)
- Comparison between MC simulations and measurements.

Web site:
Main references:
Dark matter search in a Beam-Dump eXperimen (BDX) at Jefferson Lab, BDX Collaboration, Jun 11, 2014 - 28 pages, JLAB-PHY-14-1914; e-Print: arXiv:1406.3028

Tutor: Valeria Sipala (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


1 position

Title: Study of PYGMY resonance in nuclei

Description: The student will work on the data analysis of an experiment performed at LNS on the excitation of PYGMY resonance in 68Ni nuclei. In particular it will work on the identification procedures of detected particles and gamma rays so learning the techniques of Pulse Shape Analysis for CSI(Tl)scintillators and Silicon detectors, Time of Flight measurements, energy loss and total energy measurements.
The student will work using the CERN ROOT analysis program, adapted to CHIMERA data, on Linux environment. He/she will also have the opportunity to study the detectors and electronics of CHIMERA apparatus used for the measurement and to participate to part of the upgrading on digital acquisition of the electronic of the detector.

Tutors: F. Rizzo ( ), G.Cardella ( )

Recommended period: June-July


1 position

Title: Test of detectors for the study of nuclear reactions in laser induced plasmas and data analysis of recent experiments

Description: The interaction of high power lasers can produce hot and dense plasmas where fusion reactions take place. This is of interest for understanding energy production and nucleosynthesis in stars and clean energy production in terrestrial next generation power plants.
At LNS the development of detectors and data acquisition for improving the experiments performed at cutting edge international facilities is presently ongoing. This includes scintillation detectors, high acceptance Faraday cups and digitizers for event acquisition. These systems are tested using calibration sources to measure efficiency and resolution.
The suitable candidate will be introduced into the field of detectors and data acquisition for fusion reactions, and will have the opportunity to work on data taken at international laboratories, to deduce the cross section of d+d fusion reactions inside hot and dense plasmas at energies of interest for energy production in stars and nuclear power plants. 

Tutor: Marco La Cognata (

Recommended period: June-July or September-October


1 position

Title: Testing and charachterization of silicon Position sensitive detectors for nuclear astrophysics

Description: Silicon detectors play a crucial role in nuclear astrophysicsexperiments. The testing of the position sensitive detectors  will be devoted to the optimization of detectors and their main features to the requirements of nuclear astrophysics both for the energy resolution optimization as well as for the spatial one. The detectors, sensitive to charged particle, will be tested with calibration radioactive sources as well as with tandem beams. Standard electronic chains will be adopted for the tests and DAQ will be made with up-to-date methods used in nuclear astrophysics experiments.

Tutor: Gianluca Pizzone (

Recommended period: June-July or September - October


1 position

Title: Nuclear reactions with exotic beams from Giant Resonances to Liquid-Gas phase transition in a transport theory framework.

Description: The LNS theorethical group has developed a kinetic transport theory able to perform realsitic simulations of the dynamics of heavy-ion collisions from Coulomb barrier energy up to intermediate energy. The approach allows one to investigate nuclear collective excitations (giant resonances), as well as fragmentation mechanisms associated with the liquid-gas phase transition and the occurrence of nuclear matter instabilities. In particular, the impact of isospin asymmetry on the collisions dynamics and related observables is the main focus of the current activity. The interest is driven by the upcoming activity on nuclear reactions with exotic beams (SPES) and by nuclear astrophysics problems, such as the formation and the structure of compact stars.   
The students will perform simulations of a particular process with the aim of a direct comparison with experimental data. The goal will be extracting information on the yet poorly known behavior of the nuclear symmetry energy at  sub- or supra-saturation density.

Tutor: Dr.ssa Maria Colonna (

Recommended period: September-October


1 position

Title: Extracting Quark-Gluon Plasma properties by mean of a Relativistic Transport Theory applied  to Heavy-Ion Collisions at RHIC and LHC energy

Description: The LNS theorethical group has developed a relativistic transport theory able to describe the dynamics of ultra-relativistic heavy-ion collisions from the early non-equilibrium stage to the hadronic kinetic feeze-out. The simulation code allows to study the dynamics of both the light and heavy quark making a direct comparison with experimental results. Of particular interest is the determination of the QGP transport properties (viscosity, diffusion coefficients, electric conductivity...) from the phenomenology of HIC and its comparison to the results from QCD solved on lattice. The summer student can choose to study observables like momentum spectra and anisotropic collective flows with the aim of constraining the temperature dependence of the shear viscosity of the quark-gluon plasma or the diffusion and drag coefficients for the heavy quark. An important open issue is to understand the impact of the early stage where electric and magnetic chromo-fields dominate the evolution. The activity will be based on a thorough direct comparison with experimental data as a function of centrality and beam energy from RHIC to LHC.

Tutor: Prof. V. Greco (

Recommended period: June-July


1 position

Title: KM3NeT – High Energy Neutrino Astronomy

The discovery of a cosmic neutrino flux made by IceCube at the South Pole on November 2013 marked de facto the birth of the Neutrino Astronomy and raised several questions about their origin, spectral index, angular distribution and flavour composition. A complete coverage of the neutrino sky is of outmost importance given the exploratory nature of this experiments. KM3NeT-ARCA, the future km3-scale telescope to be installed in the Mediterranean Sea, will survey our Galaxy including the Galactic Center, not visible from IceCube, which are sites of new unknown phenomena. KM3NeT will also contribute, with IceCube, to a multimessanger survey of the Universe. The first phase of the project, 0.1 km3, has been funded and is under construction off-shore Capo Passero (Italy) at a depth of 3500 m . The first string was deployed the 3rd December 2015. Now and in the near future the collaboration is working hard for the construction, test and calibration of the detector and the data taking and analysis of the data from the first 24 strings, that will complete the Phase 1 of the ARCA detector, to be completed in one year from now. Phase 1 will have an effective area and volume larger than the actual ANTARES and will focus on galactic HE neutrino searches.
The students will be involved in construction, test and calibration of the strings, operation of the detector and analysis.

Tutors: Piera Sapienza (, Giorgio riccobene (

Recommended period: June-July


Local Secretariat:
Virginia Potenza

Torino 1

1 Position: CLAS/CLAS12

Title: Spin-parity analyses of strangeonia/axial mesons photoproduction with CLAS data and feasibility studies with CLAS12

Description: The Torino Group is involved in experimental activities in Hall-B Hadron Physics experiments at Jefferson Lab (Newport News, VA, USA). One of them is hadron spectroscopy with photon probes, a relatively new field that was scarcely explored in the past due to the lack of photon beams of suitable intensity and resolution. Data had been collected in the last years by the CLAS Experiment, and they are currently being analysed. The purpose of the analyses undertaken in Torino is to look for signatures of new mesons with hidden strangeness content, whose production is expected to be suppressed due to the fact that strange quarks have to be extracted from the sea. For such states few and not yet confirmed observations exist from past experiments, obtained in several kinds of reactions. Photoproduction might be a suitable environment for their production, especially if their spin is 1, which wouldn't require a spin flip from the initial state (with the possibility they might also bean an exotic nature, that is, being constituted by quarks as well as gluons).
The Student will be collaborating to:

  • the spin-parity analysis of the selected data, by means of coupled channel techniques in the framework of the latest models developed in collaboration with the Theoretical Group at JLAB and the HASPECT working group, of several reactions with (KKbarpi) in the final state (with different charge combinations)
  • a feasibility study of the same reactions, together with signal sensitivities, at higher energy photon beam and with the new CLAS12 detector, currently being built at JLAB and that will start taking data in 2017 at the upgraded CEBAF machine (Meson-EX experiment).

and will actively develop his/her work in the framework of Torino Cloud Computing infrastructure.
For more information:

Tutor: Alessandra Filippi (

Recommended period: from the last week of August to end of October

  Student residence

Local Secretariat:
Valentina Lissia,
ph. +39 0116707271 - email:

For more information see:

Trieste 2

1 Position: CMS

Title: Track finding studies for the CMS track trigger upgrade

Description:The rate and amount of events produced by the Large Hadron Collider at CERN surpass the mass storage capabilities of current technologies. To preserve their physics potential the LHC experiments exploit dedicated online systems (the trigger systems), whose purpose is to perform a quick real-time selection of the most interesting events in order to reduce the data throughput from millions of events per second to a few hundreds. The requirements on the CMS trigger system will become even more stringent in the LHC high luminosity phase expected beyond 2020, for which all the LHC experiments will undergo significant upgrades. Given the tight timing constraints, the trigger decisions can rely only on a partial and coarse information on the event. The online reconstruction of the charge particle trajectories represents a very challenging task, which however is expected to allow a more sophisticated and refined event selection and to play a fundamental role in coping with the higher event rates provided by the upgraded LHC.

Activity: The student will participate in the track trigger R&D work of the CMS group in Trieste, which focuses on the development and optimization of new pattern recognition and track finding techniques. He/she will use the C++ simulation of the upgraded CMS detector to study the new algorithms and estimate their performance.

Tutor: Massimo Casarsa (

Recommended period: September-October


1 Position: FAMU

Title: Data analysis of the newly collected data, studies of the muon transfer process of the muon in a mixture of hydrogen and higher Z gas at different temperatures

Description: The final goal of the FAMU experiment is to measure the proton Zemach radius by measuring the hyperfine splitting of the μp ground state [1,2]. The experimental method requires a detection system suited for time resolved X-ray spectroscopy. The results of the first measurements performed at the RIKEN-RAL muon facility are presented....
... The work will consist in performing analysis on the data collected in the first part of 2016 at the RIKEN RAL muon facility. Muonic atoms characteristic X-rays were detected using scintillating counters based on LaBr3(Ce) crystals (energy resolution 2.6% at 662 keV and decay time τ = 16 ns) readout by Hamamatsu R11265-200 PMTs and two HPGe detectors used to have a
benchmark spectrum. Hence, the waveforms will be processed off-line to reconstruct time and energy of each detected X-ray. By studying the differences between the time distributions of prompt events and the delayed X-rays emitted by μO(Ar) atoms it will be possible do measure the muon transfer rate from hydrogen to oxygen (argon) at different temperatures (300K-100K). Results are going to be submitted for publication on international journal.

Activity: The student will participate in the simulation and analysis work of the FAMU group in Trieste.

Tutors: Emiliano Mocchiutti (, Andrea Vacchi (

Recommended period: May-June or September-October


Local Secretariat:
Alessandra Filippi- email:
ph. +39 040 5583375
fax +39 040 5583350