31090 - Experiments and Discoveries of Nuclear and Subnuclear Physics

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student has an overview of the most important and fundamental experiments for Nuclear Physics and Subnuclear Physics who have permitted to make important discoveries in this field of investigation, as well as the cultural impact in a broader sense.

Course contents

The discovery of the nucleus and the neutron.  The beta decay and the discovery of the neutrino.  The discovery of cosmic rays and subnuclear particles.  The intrinsic properties of particles.  The discovery of antimatter. The quark model of barions and mesons.     The inelastic scattering of high-energy electrons on nucleons and the discovery of building blocks. The discovery of the strong interaction mediators. The discovery of c, b, t quarks and of tau- lepton. The discovery of weak interaction mediators: the vector bosons  W+-  and  Zzero. The discovery of the violations of parity, charge coniugation and time-reversal in weak interactions.  The oscillation phenomena in the  Kzero meson.  The discovery of various types of neutrinos:  nu-e, nu-mu , nu-tau.  The problem of neutrino's mass and the oscillation phenomena.


E. Segrè: “Nuclei e particelle”, Ed. Zanichelli, Bologna

S. Braibant, G. Giacomelli, M. Spurio: “Particelle e interazioni fondamentali”,

Ed. Springer Verlag Italia, Milano.

Teaching methods


Assessment methods

Final oral interview.

Office hours

See the website of Antonio Zoccoli