May-Aug, 1998 — TRIUMF University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C.

  • Research Assistant: developed and tested a new detector to prepare it for installation in a new beamline
  • Worked with the electronics equipment, gas handling, data acquisition and analysis systems
  • Gained experience and knowledge of all kinds of particle detectors

This was a co-op job I obtained through the SFU co-op department. I worked with the Dragon Group, working on a new beam line for the ISAC Facility, which was under construction at the time. The beam line has since been finished in the now-complete facility.

My work was on the detectors that were to go at the end of the Dragon beamline. As there were several particle detectors under consideration, I learned the basics of many varieties:

  • ionization chambers (IC)
  • wire chambers
  • multi-channel plates (MCP)
  • semiconductors
  • parallel-grid avalanche detector (PGAC)

Most of my work was however geared towards only one, the Ionization Chamber, of which a prototype had been constructed for testing in one of TRIUMF's labs. I did extensive work with this prototype, which later went on to become the very detector that was used on the finished beamline. In my work, I had to deal with the following:

  • an open radioactive source for testing purposes
  • a gas handling system to deliver the explosive gas that was used for ionization inside the chamber
  • electronics equipment for measuring the signals generated by the chamber, including:
    • pre-amplifiers
    • main amplifiers
    • pulse shapers
    • discriminators
    • multi-channel analyzers (MCA)
    • time-to-digital converters (TDC)
    • analog-to-digital converters (ADC)
  • a data acquisition system, designed to read the digital signals from the electronics and store them
  • the analysis of this stored data to determine the capability of the chamber and the effect of changes to the other systems