PostDoctoral Position at INFN Turin

In the next months, a two years position will be available in Torino at Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare in the framework of the SOCIAL (SOlar Composition Investigated At Luna) project, financed by the Italian Ministry of University and Research. The candidate will work at the LUNA deep-underground laboratory, performing nuclear astrophysics experiments. Below a short description of the project:

The recent detection of CNO neutrinos from the Sun may provide an independent determination of the properties of the solar core, and in particular its metallicity. However, the dominant source of error at the moment is the 14N(p,g)15O cross section, which cannot be directly measured at solar energies. Current estimates rely on extrapolations from higher-energy data.

The SOCIAL project aims at measuring the 14N(p,g)15O cross section at low energies with high precision, taking advantage of the much suppressed gamma-ray background achievable in the underground Gran Sasso laboratory.

The experimental setup involves directing a high-intensity proton beam from the LUNA-400 kV accelerator onto a pure nitrogen gas target. Gamma-rays produced in the reaction will be detected using a segmented 4pi-BGO detector. A data analysis technique using gamma-gamma coincidences and comparison with simulated spectra will enable the determination of both total cross sections and partial cross sections for individual gamma transitions.

Efforts will be made to reduce environmental background by developing a passive shielding for the experimental setup. In addition, a detailed characterization of the gas target will be pursued to achieve the required precision in the determination of the 14N(p,g)15O cross section.

The candidate will be involved in all phases of the project, i.e. setup design and characterization, data taking and data analysis. The project will start next fall.

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