NFYK16000U  Modern methods for particle scattering

Volume 2016/2017

M.Sc. Physics


The purpose of this course is to give the students an insight into various conceptual, theoretical, practical aspects of particle scattering computations.

Various recent developments in such computations as well as in related topics will be discussed and we will see how to employ different modern techniques to simplify calculations maximally. We will also in the course explore hints of a deeper underlying structure governing the structure of amplitudes.

Learning Outcome

The course will begin with an introduction to practical field theory computations, and discuss many related topics, such as numerical methods for computation, recursion techniques, loop amplitudes, unitarity, spinor-helicity techniques, color-ordering formalism, factorization of amplitudes in various limits, also it is the aim to cover different computational settings than standard field theory; for example effective field theory techniques and for example practical uses of string theory results. The course will also give a brief introduction to concepts such as scattering cross-section computation and how use such results in an experimental setting.

At the end of the course the students should

  • Have gained a more solid background in field theory and for example have been giving a proper introduction to various aspects of more advanced computations.
  • Have gained knowledge about loop computations and e.g. how effective field treatments can be useful with regards to renormalization,
  • Have gained practical knowledge on how to do integrations and be aware of useful concepts such as Feynman parametrization and be able to use unitarity techniques to help simplify for loop computation.
  • Have been introduced to spinor-helicity techniques and the color-ordering formalism for amplitudes
  • Know about physical factorization limits for amplitudes
  • Have been introduced to the various modern recursive techniques, such as e.g. on-shell recursion.
  • Have knowledge of how to do cross-section computations using amplitude results.
  • Have gained insight in various numerical methods for computation


This course builds on the knowledge from quantum mechanics, quantum field theory, special and general relativity and elementary particle physics. The course will provide the students with a competent background for further studies within this research field, i.e. a M.Sc. project in particle phenomenology and theoretical high-energy physics. It will also provide those that plan to continue into experimental high-energy physics or cosmology the necessary background for various computations. This course will provide the students with some mathematical tools that have application in a range of fields within and beyond physics.

will be announced

Good knowledge of Quantum Mechanics and Elementary Particle Physics and some knowledge of Classical mechanics, Quantum Field Theory, Special and General Relativity and Cosmology, and String Theory.
Specifically the student is expected to have followed the courses: "General Relativity and Cosmology" and "Elementary Particle Physics" or equivalent.
Lectures and exercises
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Continuous assessment
Written examination, 8 hours
The final grade will be based on two components:
(i) 6 homework assignments (25%) and
(ii) 8 hours take home exam (75%).
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
More internal examiners.

Reexamination: 8 hours take home assignment counts for 75% of the final grade. Points from the homework assignments handed in during the course (if any) count for the remaining 25% of the grade.

Criteria for exam assesment

The highest mark (12) is given for excellent exam performance that demonstrates full mastery of the above mentioned learning goals with no or only minor gaps.

The mark 2 is given to a student who has only minimally achieved the course goals

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 35
  • Exercises
  • 21
  • Exam
  • 0,5
  • Preparation
  • 149,5
  • Total
  • 206,0