A number of projects are available involving theoretical and numerical studies of transport processes for electrons and positrons in:
atomic and molecular gases
soft condensed matter under non-equilibrium conditions.
Broadly speaking, the projects link fundamental, single-scattering microscopic collision phenomena, i.e. cross sections, investigated both experimentally and theoretically, with the behaviour of real world, many-body, macroscopic systems. Examples of these systems range from plasma processing technologies to biological and medical applications, such as positron emission tomography (PET) or plasma medicine.
In order to make the required transition to the macroscopic world, the fundamental scattering cross sections must be averaged in an appropriate way, either
as prescribed by kinetic theory, through solutions of the Boltzmann partial differential - integral equation, and/or
as calculated from Monte Carlo simulation,
to produce the quantities of ultimate experimental interest.
Many of the theoretical techniques and computer codes developed previously by the supervising team for gaseous electronics will carry over to positrons, with some modifications to account for positronium formation. Students with good computational and analytic skills can make important contributions in this area. In contrast to the situation for gaseous transport, for which the kinetic theoretical formalism has been developed to sophisticated levels over the past 30 years or so, soft condensed matter kinetic theory is still in its infancy. Students with outstanding conceptual skills would find this project particularly interesting, since it combines both cutting edge fundamental research with important medical and biological applications.
Further reading: "Introductory transport theory for charged particles in gases", R. E. Robson (World Scientific, Singapore, 2006) or visit our list of publications.
Further information contact our research team.