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Plane-Parallel Chamber


Development and Investigation of Prototypes for Gas-Filled Plane-Parallel Chambers, Realizing Time-of-Flight Detector for the Project "Alice" (LHC, CERN) and Other New Generation Experiments

Tech Area / Field

  • INS-MEA/Measuring Instruments/Instrumentation

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
VNIIEF, Russia, N. Novgorod reg., Sarov

Supporting institutes

  • ITEF (ITEP), Russia, Moscow


  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory, USA, TN, Oak Ridge\nUniversity of Tennessee, USA, TN, Knoxville

Project summary

This proposal represents an effort of a group of nuclear physicists at ITEP together with the colleagues from VNIIEF to develop a new type of nuclear particle detectors with sub-nanosecond time resolution which can be employed in large-area, high-granularity instruments required by modern nuclear and high-energy physics experimentation. Proposed technology seems to be an order of magnitude less expensive, than existing ones, easy in production and stable in operation.

Industrialization of this technology might open an application field for such detectors in applied research, in cosmic rays study etc. Participation of VNIIEF provides the basis both for the former military high technology utilization in this project and, in case of the success of the project, for the formation of the private enterprise for commercial-scale production of a new product.

The involvement of high-skilled personnel from the Russian military industry enterprises, as well as the high-technology know-how accumulated in military oriented organizations, will promote the process of conversion of former military establishments into private sector.

The technique under discussion is based on the mechanism of limited-proportional amplification of charge, produced by nuclear particles in the gaseous volume between the electrodes of Parallel Plate Chamber (PPC). Strong fields, needed for high gain and time resolution, may be enabled due to the high accuracy of electrodes fabrication and metallization, at use of technologies known in the weapon industry.

On termination of the project one expects to have a model of implementation of gas-filled Parallel-Plate Chambers in Time-of-Flight measurements. This model based on the existing and obtained data, which allow explaining and predicting the time resolution, gain and other parameters in the broad range of the high voltage values applied and for different gas mixtures.

It is planned to develop the activity up to the level of creation of several scaleable working prototypes, ready for being offered to the existing and future physics research communities as commercial detector-product similar to photo-multipliers, limited streamer tubes, scintillators, wave-length shifting fibers, large area silicon detectors and other technologies which have been industrialized earlier.

It is foreseen to research for the new fields of application of the proposed technology, for example - cosmic rays research or immediate possible application in high radiation resistant calorimetric devices for high-energy and nuclear physics instrumentation.

The Proposed Project Provides for

1. Development of infrastructure for accounting and design works: to create the working group of specialists and to equip it with computer workstations with modern commercial engineering software, to establish the computer communications between the participating institutions.
2. Development of methods and preparation of metrological equipment for selection of parallel-plate chamber cells with specified parameters.
3. Development of technology for conducting layer deposition to PPC electrodes. Development of methods of metallization control.
4. Production of pilot samples of cells made from different materials.
5. The laboratory study of main PPC characteristics, when made by different technologies and from different materials. On-beam tests of sample PPCs.
6. Production of a small party of PPC cells for population of detector prototypes.
7. Investigation of PPC gas mixture parameters, selection of the optimal mixture composition.
8. Manufacturing of several TOP detector prototypes and their experimental tests on beams with energies from 0.5 to 11 GeV (proton synchrotron U11, ITEP). Similar measurement runs on PS and SPS accelerators (CERN).
9. Preparation study for mass production of PPC cells for ALICE detector.


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