Case Studies

Liverpool-designed and built particle detectors

Physicists based in Liverpool designed and built world-class particle detector systems incorporated in the heart of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator.

These detectors were used in the ATLAS experiment that discovered the Higgs boson. They were also used in LHCb experiments that aimed to understand matter/anti-matter asymmetry in the universe, and in the ALPHA experiment which is studying anti-hydrogen for the first time.

Cold-atom interferometry represents the new frontier in the detection of radioactive materials by sensing their gravity fields, and in the development of inertial navigation systems, an alternative to current GPS technology. We collaborate with Nobel Prize winner Martin Perl in this exciting field.

Cold-atom interferometry represents the new frontier in the detection of radioactive materials by sensing their gravity fields, and in the development of inertial navigation systems, an alternative to current GPS technology. We collaborate with Nobel Prize winner Martin Perl in this exciting field.

Each project has pushed technological boundaries in radiation and particles detectors, with spin-off benefits now appearing in other applications. These include:

  • Healthcare: more sensitive, higher spatial resolution detectors are bringing direct advantages to clinicians and patients
  • Security: using novel scanning techniques and portable radiation imaging systems
  • Energy: for operations and decontamination processes on civil nuclear sites, and increasingly of interest in oil and gas exploration.
Next generation single photon emission computed tomography (ProSPECTus) will reduce the time needed to detect brain tumours. We are helping to improve both the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

Next generation single photon emission computed tomography (ProSPECTus) will reduce the time needed to detect brain tumours. We are helping to improve both the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

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