Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare

Sezione di Trieste

Wizard and astroparticle physics

The WiZard collaboration is an international (European-American) collaboration for cosmic ray physics. Its main scientific goal is measuring the flux and energy spectra of antiprotons and positrons in the cosmic radiation and continuing the search for primordial antimatter. The importance of this research stems with the comprehension of fondamental question about the Universe and its evolution and it is strongly connected with particle physics problems as CP/CPT violation and GUT theories . Trieste group is part of WiZard from the very beginning and its main contribution is in the realization of silicon detectors for several apparati and in the analysis of the experimental data obtained.

We work in close collaboration with other INFN groups in Italy (Bari, Firenze, Perugia, Roma "Tor Vergata") and groups in France, Germany, Russia, Sweden and USA.

The WiZard-Trieste group is involved in several astroparticle physics projects as:

  • BALLOON flights. We performed three balloon-borne experiments mainly to measure the positron-electron (TS93 experiment) component and the antiproton-proton component (CAPRICE94 and CAPRICE98 experiments) of the cosmic rays.
  • NINA. A telescope made by 16 silicon detecors assembled in a novel tecnique to study the nuclei component of the cosmic rays. It is part of a Russian satellite that was launched on the 10th July 1998.
  • PAMELA. A magnet spectrometer in a satellite to measure antimatter in the cosmic radiation that is planned to be launched with a Russian satellite at the end of 2002. Trieste group is responsible for the construction of the imaging calorimeter.
  • SIEYE. A small telescope made by silicon detectors to be used as a mask by astronauts to understand the light flashes observed by them. Two versions of the telescope were used, and data taken, on board of the space station MIR.


The WiZard group at Trieste is made of 7 persons: INFN Research director Dr. Andrea Vacchi, Full professor Paolo Schiavon, INFN researchers Dr. Walter Bonvicini and Dr. Mirko Boezio, graduate students Roberto Cirami and Gianluigi Zampa and INFN technician Mr. Nicola Zampa.

Publications and thesis

A list of publications and conference contributions from the WiZard collaboration can be found here.

Recent publications and contributions.

We offer thesis work in astroparticle physics.


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