Experimental Physics Department


Head of department: Dra. María-Ester Brandan

The Experimental Physics Department includes (in January 2016) 27 scientists, 9 postdocs, 16 academic technicians, 9 administrative staff and almost 100 associated students. The department has extensive experimental installations, 5 electrostatic particle accelerators and a variety of laboratories for target preparation, detector design, medical physics, solid-state dosimetry, astroparticle detection, X-ray irradiation, liquid-drop collisions and optics, among others.

Three CONACyT National Laboratories reside in our department: High Altitude Water Cherenkov (HAWC), Sciences for Research and Conservation of the Cultural Heritage (LANCIC) and Accelerator Mass-Spectrometry (LEMA).

At the low-energy electron and positive ion accelerators research on basic and applied science is performed. The lines of research include atomic and nuclear physics, material modification, implantation and characterization, surface physics, polymers and metal behaviour, nanostructures production and modification. Analytical techniques such as PIXE, RBS, ERDA, PESA, NRA, X-ray fluorescence, ionoluminiscence and others are well established. These tools are used in basic and applied physics research. Accelerators and radiation in general lead to multidisciplinary studies in art, archeology, biology, odontology, anthropology, and medicine. At intermediate energies we work in nuclear physics, heavy-ions and nuclear astrophysics among other specialities. At high energies, we are part of collaborations with cosmic-ray observatories and the great accelerators.

Different methods of monitoring, detecting, quantifying and using ionizing radiation are investigated. We work in dosimetry, micro-dosimetry, and medical physics, and maintain active collaborations with hospitals, including research on physics applied in diagnostic radiology, molecular imaging and radiotherapy. We work in computational physics and physics of evolution. The department have plasma facilities where we study thin films, metal deposition and nitriding.