Current Research Projects

I am a physicist and work as a senior staff scientist at the GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung GmbH (GSI) in Arheilgen, close to Darmstadt, Germany.
I am head of the PANDA detectors department, deputy head of the PANDA/Hadrons division within the research division, and lead the GSI DIRC group.

PANDA Barrel DIRC

As system manager I am the project leader of the Barrel DIRC for the PANDA Detector at the FAIR facility at GSI, the primary particle identification (PID) system in the barrel region of the PANDA target spectrometer. The design for the barrel DIRC is based on the successful BaBar DIRC detector with several key improvements, such as fast timing, and a compact imaging system using focusing optics.
The barrel DIRC project is in the final stage of the R&D phase. Activities are focused on optimizing both the PID performance of the design and the overall system cost. The responsibilities of the PANDA DIRC group at GSI include
  • measurement of the optical properties of DIRC radiator bars and plates;
  • development of the simulation and reconstruction software;
  • mechanical design of the barrel DIRC;
  • performance validation of the DIRC design using prototypes in particle beams;
  • project management.
Several prototypes have been constructed and placed in particle beams at GSI and at CERN to measure the timing and Cherenkov angle resolution as well as pion/kaon separation power of various DIRC designs and to test the quality of the simulation and reconstruction algorithms.

DIRC-based PID for the EIC Central Detector

As one of the principle investigators of an R&D collaboration of several groups in the US and Germany, centered around the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (JLab), I have been involved in the R&D for the design and test of a barrel DIRC system in the central detector at the future electron-ion collider facility since 2011. The DIRC group at GSI contributes to the R&D by building and testing a prototype for the compact imaging region and by developing the simulation and reconstruction framework. After the initial feasibility study (eRD4) provided a proof-of-principle for a high-performance DIRC design, the R&D entered into a new phase in 2015 when the focus shifted to design optimization and the study of the combined PID performance of the experiment by forming the PID Consortium for an integrated program for Particle Identification (PID) at a future Electron-Ion Collider (eRD14), a joint effort from 25 labs and universities.

DIRC Upgrade for the GlueX Experiment

In 2015 the GSI DIRC group joined the GlueX Collaboration at JLab to work on the R&D for the GlueX DIRC counter. Four of the bar boxes from the BaBar experiment will be transported to JLab in 2017 and installed in GlueX in 2017/2018 to provide upgraded PID for the GlueX high-intensity runs. Our activities are focused on the development of the simulation and reconstruction software with the goal of performing tests of the DIRC PID algorithms, developed for PANDA, on GlueX experiment data.