U.S. Particle Accelerator School
U.S. Particle Accelerator School
Education in Beam Physics and Accelerator Technology

Fundamentals of Accelerator Physics and Technology with Simulations and Measurements Lab


Northern Illinois University

Course Name:

Fundamentals of Accelerator Physics and Technology with Simulations and Measurements Lab (undergraduate level)

Course website


Simon C. Leemann, Fernando Sannibale, Stefano DeSantis, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab; Thomas Schietinger, Paul Scherrer Institute

Purpose and Audience
This course is intended as an introduction to the field of accelerator physics and technology and is suitable for senior undergraduate students or students from other fields with an interest in accelerator physics. The course is also appropriate for engineers and technicians working in accelerator-related fields who wish to broaden their background.

Either previous coursework or a general understanding of classical physics and electromagnetism at an undergraduate level. Courses in special relativity (at the level of Special Relativity by A.P. French or Introduction to Special Relativity by Robert Resnick), classical mechanics (lower division level) and electrodynamics (at the level of Introduction to Electrodynamics by David J. Griffiths) at the junior undergraduate level or higher are required.

It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that they meet the course prerequisites or have equivalent experience. Students may self-evaluate using these questions.

This course will focus on the fundamental principles of particle accelerators and beams, and will limit rigorous mathematical derivations. Daily lectures will impart an understanding of fundamental concepts. Laboratory exercises will develop and expand on key concepts. Upon completing this course, students should understand the basic principles of particle accelerators, and how to interpret the measured characteristics of the beams they produce.

Instructional Method
This course includes a series of lectures in the morning, followed by afternoon laboratory sessions on related subject matter. Laboratory sessions will include computer simulations and experimental measurements of accelerator hardware. The lab course will emphasize the comparison of measurement data with computer simulation results. Students will write and submit reports for the lab exercises that will be graded. Additional daily problem sets, to be completed outside of scheduled class time, will be assigned in the morning lecture sessions and gathered the next morning for grading. An Instructor or TA will be available in the evenings to assist with assignments. There will be a final exam on the last day of the class.

Course Content
The lectures will begin with a review of the relevant aspects of special relativity and electromagnetic theory as applied to beam properties and acceleration techniques. Figures of merit will be introduced for accelerators in science, medicine and industry. Lectures will examine the historical development of accelerators and their past and present applications. From there, the course will cover principles of acceleration, including the physics of linear accelerators, synchrotrons, and storage rings. The emphasis will be shared between hadron and lepton accelerators. The basic concepts of accelerator design will be introduced, along with discussions of machine lattice design and particle beam optics. Longitudinal (synchrotron) and transverse (betatron) beam dynamics will be explored. A number of additional special topics will be reviewed, including among others, particle sources, beam injection and extraction, synchrotron radiation, beam diagnostics, and collective effects and beam instabilities.

The afternoon laboratory sessions will be related to the subject matter in the lectures. Accelerator hardware and measurement instrumentation will be made available for laboratory experiments. Computer lab modules will complement the laboratory assignments.

Reading Requirements
(to be provided by the USPAS) The Physics of Particle Accelerators: An Introduction by Klaus Wille (Oxford University Press, 2005); and (to be supplied in electronic form) Accelerators for Pedestrians by Simon Baird (CERN Note AB-Note-2007-014 OP).

Credit Requirements
Students will be evaluated based on performance: homework assignments (30% of grade) computer/lab sessions (40% of grade), final exam (30% of grade).

USPAS Computer Requirements
There will be no Computer Lab and all participants are required to bring their own portable computer to access online course notes and computer resources. This can be a laptop or a tablet with a sufficiently large screen and keyboard. Windows, Mac, and Linux-based systems that are wifi capable and have a standard web browser and mouse are all acceptable. You should have privileges for software installs. If you are unable to bring a computer, please contact uspas@fnal.gov ASAP to request a laptop loan.¬†Very limited IT support and spare loaner laptops will be available during the session.

Northern Illinois University course number: PHYS 459 Special Problems in Physics
Indiana University course number: Physics 470, Accelerator Fundamentals
MIT course number: 8.277, Introduction to Particle Accelerators