Dr. Mike Phipps Successfully Defends Thesis

By Mike Suchor
January 25, 2022

Dr. Mike Phipps successfully defended his thesis in December 2021. Mike’s work involved development of ATLAS new Reaction Plane Detector (RPD) along with performance projections for physics observables. This starts with a review of past ψ1-based physics measurements. The radiation levels expected during Runs 3 and 4 are then quantified and radiation studies discussed that led to the selection of the detector's radiation hard active material. Then the design itself will be presented and features and biases of this design explored through simulation. This allows for performance-based design optimization and provides the level of understanding necessary to reconstruct the detector's response as precisely as possible. A number of machine learning-based approaches to this reconstruction will be presented that allow for resolution
improvements of up to 12%. These competitive simulation-based projection results will be compared to the resolutions to which other experiments have measured ψ1, and finally, projections will be presented for several Run 4 optimization strategies that may boost performance by an additional 35%.