RD51 collaboration

Development of Micro-Pattern Gas Detectors Technologies


The proposed R&D collaboration, RD51, aims at facilitating the development of advanced gas-avalanche detector technologies and associated electronic-readout systems, for applications in basic and applied research. The main objective of the R&D programme is to advance technological development and application of Micropattern Gas Detectors.

The invention of Micro-Pattern Gas Detectors (MPGD), in particular the Gas Electron Multiplier (GEM),  the Micro-Mesh Gaseous Structure (Micromegas), and more recently other micro pattern detector schemes, offers the potential to develop new gaseous detectors with unprecedented spatial resolution, high rate capability, large sensitive area, operational stability and radiation hardness. In some applications, requiring very large-area coverage with moderate spatial resolutions, more coarse Macro-patterned detectors, e.g. Thick-GEMs (THGEM) or patterned resistive-plate devices could offer an interesting and economic solution. The design of the new micro-pattern devices appears suitable for industrial production. In addition, the availability of highly integrated amplification and readout electronics allows for the design of gas-detector systems with channel densities comparable to that of modern silicon detectors. Modern wafer post-processing allows for the integration of gas-amplification structures directly on top of a pixelized readout chip. Thanks to these recent developments, particle detection through the ionization of gas has large fields of application in future particle, nuclear and astro-particle physics experiments with and without accelerators.

The RD51 collaboration involves ~ 450 authors, 75 Universities and Research Laboratories from 25 countries in Europe, America, Asia and Africa. All partners are already actively pursuing either basic- or application-oriented R&D involving a variety of MPGD concepts. The collaboration established common goals, like experimental and simulation tools, characterization concepts and methods, common infrastructures at test beams and irradiation facilities, and methods and infrastructures for MPGD production.