Students return from nuclear physics research internship in USA

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Students return from nuclear physics research internship in USA
Photograph of the Lowell group standing outside their Physics building. Olivia front left and Huw front right.

Two of our MPhys Physics students, Olivia Voyce and Huw Shiel, have arrived back from their summer research internship at the University of Massachusetts Lowell (UML), USA.  Their research project was the Spectroscopic characterisation of spent nuclear fuel rods, which allowed them to build on their practical skills in using germanium detectors for nuclear measurements.  Olivia and Huw used the LARA (Lowell Array for Radiological Assaying) detector array, which was composed of six Compton supressed germanium detectors, four of which were donated by the University of Liverpool from the TESSA array.  Huw and Olivia acquired data from an undepleted and semi-depleted fuel rod to perform a uranium fuel analysis.  Analysis of this data will continue at Lowell and Liverpool.

On returning from their internship Olivia and Huw said “We spent the majority of our time within UML’s 1MW fission reactor facility, which was a unique experience.  We gained valuable data analysis skills using software such as RadWare, which we hope to use in our final year at Liverpool.  Aside from the hard work and research we undertook, we also found time to explore Boston and the surrounding areas. It was an experience we are not likely to soon forget and would like thank the University of Massachusetts Lowell and the University of Liverpool for the opportunity of a lifetime.“

The Department would like to acknowledge the support and supervision provided by Partha Chowdhury and Kim Lister during Olivia and Huw’s internship.