Subatomic Physics (PHYS*4130)

Code and section: PHYS*4130*01

Term: Winter 2010

Instructor: Paul Garrett


Course Outline


Lecturer Office Extension Email
Paul Garrett MacN 220 52192


Day Time Location
M,W,F 11:30–12:20 MacN 201

Course Materials


No single text covers the course material.

However, the book by B.R. Martin Nuclear and Particle Physics, an Introduction, John Wiley and Sons, ISBN-13 978-0 470 02532 8, offers a good introduction to many of the topics.

Course Evaluation

Assessment Weight
Assignments 20%
Midterm 30%
Final 50%

If the final exam mark is greater than that of the midterm, the midterm will be dropped and the final exam mark will be 80%.

The purpose of this course is to introduce physics at the subatomic level, from the physics of the nucleus to that of particles that are created at the highest-energy laboratories. Lectures will be given on the following topics:

  • Mathematical preliminaries: complex functions and integration, group theory
  • Cross sections, Rutherford scattering, QM scattering theory
  • Born series, first Born approximation, form factors
  • Nucleon scattering, deep inelastic scattering, quarks, SU(2) isospin
  • Particle quantum numbers, parity, charge conjugation, lepton number, baryon number, CPT theorem, particle decay modes, antiparticles
  • Feynman diagrams, basic forces, boson exchange, strong/weak charges, decay diagrams
  • Standard model, CKM matrix, Zweig rule
  • Nucleon-nucleon scattering, NN potential, meson exchange, nuclear binding and masses
  • Nuclear decay modes, \(\beta \pm\) decay, Fermi theory, phase space
  • Fermi and Gamow-Teller decays, \(\alpha\) decay, \(\gamma\) decay and conversion \(e^-\)
  • Nuclear structure, shell model, collective model
  • Radiation exposure and nuclear medicine, fission, fusion, nuclear weapons