Available student project - The SABRE Dark Matter Experiment

Research fields

  • Astrophysics
  • Physics of the Nucleus
The SABRE Proof-of-Principle detector, underground at Gran Sasso, Italy.

Project details

There is a large and convincing body of astrophysical evidence that most of the matter in the universe is dark. Understanding the nature of dark matter is one of the most important problems in modern physics.

The SABRE experiment is a dark matter particle detector that is being constructed in collaboration with researchers in Australia, Europe, and the United States. It will be housed ~1 km underground in the Stawell Underground Physics Laboratory, a new facility which is currently under construction in Victoria, Australia. To reduce the backgrounds from naturally occurring radioactive material, the SABRE detector will be fabricated from the purest NaI(Tl) scintillator material ever made, and be surrounded by over 10 tons of purified liquid scintillator.

SABRE will search for a signal of dark matter-induced nuclear recoils which modulates annually due to the Earth's motion around the sun. To avoid confusion between seasonal background effects and a true dark matter signal, SABRE will operate twin detectors in the northern and southern hemisphere.

Multiple projects are available to support the SABRE experiment. These include local experiments at ANU, computer simulations to predict backgrounds and the overall experimental sensitivity, data acquisition system development and data analysis SABRE measurements.

A top-up SABRE scholarhsip is available for honours projects.

Required background

Students should be willing to attend phone meetings with collaborators in Australia and overseas.
For some projects, a proficiency with coding is essential (Python/C++).
Honours or HDR students may travel to the SABRE commisioning site or the underground laboratory during their project.
Engineering students with relevant skills are encouraged to get involved.

Project suitability

This research project can be tailored to suit students of the following type(s)
  • 3rd year special project
  • PhB (2nd or 3rd year)
  • Honours project
  • Phd or Masters
  • Vacation scholar

Contact supervisor

Bignell, Lindsey profile

Other supervisor(s)

Lane, Gregory profile

Stuchbery, Andrew profile

Zhong, Yiyi profile

Updated:  15 January 2019/ Responsible Officer:  Head of Department/ Page Contact:  Physics Webmaster