Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

I Pion Detection

  1. Dec 21, 2016 #1
    I'm a student in high school asking for suggestions for an experiment proposal.
    So far, our idea has been to recreate Young's interference experiment, but instead of using electrons, we will use a heavier particle. Charged pions have been the first choice so far. Aluminum is the current delegate for the material used to direct pions into the slits. Right now, we are searching for a film to be used to detect the interference patterns made by the pions.
    Are there any materials available to detect pions?

    If anyone can also answer if pion decay would become a major problem in our experiment, it would be a great help :) Thanks
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 22, 2016 #2


    User Avatar
    2017 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    A double-slit experiment with pions? What do you want to use as slit? Did you calculate how slow the pions have to be to see an interference pattern with any reasonable slit width? Where do you expect to get the slow pions from?
    Yes, but you are starting with the completely wrong step.
  4. Dec 22, 2016 #3


    User Avatar
    2017 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    If there is a test you can perform in 5 minutes that can show you if your idea is feasible, do it directly. Don't spend hours on some details if this simple test can show you that further work is pointless.

    CERN has a pion source, yes: a source of fast pions. Calculate their de-Broglie wavelength, then see which slit diameter you'll need for interference. Compare this to the diameter of an atom, or the diameter of an atomic nucleus.
  5. Dec 22, 2016 #4

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2017 Award

    This is very good advice.

    If you want to win this competition, you are going to have to significantly up your game. You're going to have to do your own research, not simply ask a bunch of people on the internet. And you're not even using the internet effectively. This experiment shows interference. If you Google "pion interference" you will get hundreds of hits. Some will be quite technical, but you are asking for a very valuable resource - the custodians of that resource will expect you to do your homework on this.

    You should take a look at previous successful proposals. That's wwhat you need to do.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?
Draft saved Draft deleted