## Acoustic wave propagation in granular media

# Titolo Tesi:

Acoustic wave propagation in granular media

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.:

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

Granular materials are frequently utilized to mitigate mechanical vibrations in the development of mechanical devices and machines. Despite their widespread applicability, a thorough comprehension of the exact roles played by particle arrangements and force chains in this process still eludes us. The objective of the thesis is to investigate the velocity of acoustic waves in granular assemblies. The research will be conducted through molecular dynamic simulations, supplemented by analytical calculations based on the approximations of effective medium theory.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Statistical Mechanics, Modeling of Complex Systems

## Acoustic and inertial sensing with optical fiber interferometers

# Titolo Tesi:

Acoustic and inertial sensing with optical fiber interferometers

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.:

Ext.: [

**Dr. Gianluca Gagliardi, Dr. Saverio Avino, Dr. Pietro Malara, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto Nazionale di Ottica (CNR-INO), Pozzuoli (IT)**]

**Brief Description:**

Novel optronic systems aimed at local and distributed sensing of strain, vibrations, deformations, accelerations and rotations can be developed harnessing the intrinsic properties of optical fibers, being miniaturized, lightweight, cheap, insensitive to electromagnetic interference and ideal for integration in structures and materials. Also, guided propagation and negligible losses of optical fibers make them ideal platforms to realize such optronic devices. The research in this direction will be conducted through different experimental settings: 1) optical fiber architectures comprising fiber-optic resonators and exotic grating structures also combined with plasmonic nanostructures; 2) fiber-optic closed-ring interferometers built within highly thermally and mechanically insulated systems. Direct applications include chemical analysis for environmental and biological monitoring and acoustic sensing, geophysical studies, seismic monitoring and navigation, while sensing the smallest modifications of the fiber guiding properties can be also used to indirectly measure the intensity of an electric field, the irradiance of ionizing radiation or rheological properties of fluids.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Introduction to Optical Sensing Techniques, Laser Spectroscopy

## Optical whispering gallery mode microresonators

# Titolo Tesi:

Optical whispering gallery mode microresonators

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.:

Ext.: [

**Dr. Gianluca Gagliardi, Dr. Antonio Giorgini, Dr. Davide D’Ambrosio, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto Nazionale di Ottica (CNR-INO), Pozzuoli (IT)**]

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Introduction to Optical Sensing Techniques, Laser Spectroscopy

## Vibrational and mass spectroscopies for investigating human cell interactions with physico-chemical agents.

# Titolo Tesi:

Vibrational and mass spectroscopies for investigating human cell interactions with physico-chemical agents.

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Maria Lepore**] [

**Marianna Bianca Emanuela Portaccio**] [

**Nadia Diano**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

The joint use of vibrational and mass spectroscopies allows the investigation of the interaction processes between human cells and different external agents, as ionizing and non-ionizing radiation, environmental pollutants, and nutraceutical compounds. The results of these studies can be usefully applied in the developments of new medical diagnostic and environmental monitoring techniques.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Applied Biophotonics, Photonics and Nanotechnologies

## Correlations of active tracers in lattice gas models

# Titolo Tesi:

Correlations of active tracers in lattice gas models

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Alessandro Sarracino**] [

**Eugenio Lippiello**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

Active particles are characterized by internal mechanisms of energy consumption that allow for persistent motion. Typical examples can be found in the biological world (from bacteria at small scales to birds and fishes) or in man-made small objects (micro and nano-devices). They represent non-equilibrium systems due to the continuous exchange of energy and heat with the surrounding environment and many interesting phenomena have been observed when a large number of interacting active particles is considered. Among the several models proposed to describe such systems, lattice gases, where particles can jump on the sites of a discrete lattice with specific interaction rules, have been recently studied both numerically and analytically. The thesis project aims at exploring the interesting open question related to the study of the behavior of correlations between few active tracers immersed in a bath of passive particles.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Statistical Mechanics, Modeling of Complex Systems

## Fluctuation-Dissipation theorem applied to neural models

# Titolo Tesi:

Fluctuation-Dissipation theorem applied to neural models

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Lucilla De Arcangelis**] [

**Alessandro Sarracino**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

The brain represents one of the most fascinating systems where several mechanisms at different scales are deeply intertwined, resulting in a complex behavior. One of the main open issues in the understanding of brain functioning is the relation between spontaneous and evoked activity, namely the response of the system to external stimuli. This question can be addressed theoretically within the general framework of statistical physics, by means of the fluctuation-dissipation relations, connecting the spontaneous fluctuations of a system with the response function to external perturbations. The thesis project aims at exploring the possibility to apply these theoretical tools to specific stochastic neural models and to experimental data for brain activity.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Statistical Mechanics, Modeling of Complex Systems

## Scaling of avalanche shape and activity power spectrum in neuronal networks

# Titolo Tesi:

Scaling of avalanche shape and activity power spectrum in neuronal networks

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Lucilla De Arcangelis**] [

**Alessandro Sarracino**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

Many systems in nature exhibit avalanche dynamics with scale-free features. A general scaling theory has been proposed for critical avalanche profiles in crackling noise, predicting the collapse onto a universal avalanche shape, as well as the scaling behavior of the activity power spectrum as Brown noise. Recently, much attention has been given to the profile of neuronal avalanches, measured in neuronal systems in vitro and in vivo. Although a universal profile was evidenced, confirming the validity of the general scaling theory, the parallel study of the power spectrum scaling under the same conditions was not performed. The puzzling observation is that in most healthy neuronal systems the power spectrum exhibits a behavior close to 1/ f, rather than Brown, noise. Numerical results on the scaling behavior of the avalanche shape and the power spectrum for a model of integrate and fire neurons confirm that the average avalanche size and the avalanche profile fulfill the general avalanche scaling theory. However, the power spectrum consistently exhibits Brown noise behavior, for both fully excitatory networks and systems with 30% inhibitory neurons. Conversely, a behavior closer to 1/ f noise is observed in systems slightly off criticality. Results suggest that the power spectrum is a good indicator to determine how close neuronal activity is to criticality. This project aims to verify such prediction in different brain datasets and in healthy and pathological conditions.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Statistical Mechanics, Modeling of Complex Systems

## Topological optimization of sensor networks for environmental risk assessment

# Titolo Tesi:

Topological optimization of sensor networks for environmental risk assessment

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Eugenio Lippiello**] [

**Alessandro Sarracino**] [

**Lucilla De Arcangelis**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

The thesis project will focus on the study of wireless sensor networks (WSNs) used to monitor various environmental aspects, including climate, air pollution, water quality, biodiversity, and seismic risk. Specifically, activity will concentrate on identifying the most efficient communication protocol between pairs of sensors to improve the efficiency and robustness of the network. This research line will employ mathematical tools from percolation theory integrated with specific aspects of WSNs, requiring interdisciplinary training including non-equilibrium statistical mechanics and communication engineering.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Statistical Mechanics, Modeling of Complex Systems, Network Science

## Testing the potential impact of foreshock occurrence in the improvement of seismic risk management

# Titolo Tesi:

Testing the potential impact of foreshock occurrence in the improvement of seismic risk management

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Eugenio Lippiello**] [

**Cataldo Godano**] [

**Lucilla De Arcangelis**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

The thesis project aims to address the question of whether foreshocks can be reliable precursors for large earthquakes. Historical records highlight the significant impact of earthquakes on human history and the ongoing search for reliable warning signs preceding destructive earthquakes. While foreshocks have been considered a promising candidate for earthquake forecasting, their potential usefulness remains uncertain. The project will utilize statistical and deep learning methodologies to identify distinct spatio-temporal patterns associated with foreshock occurrence in seismic catalogs. The objective is to establish empirical laws for foreshocks and incorporate them into epidemic models to minimize discrepancies between synthetic and instrumental catalogs. The study aims to enhance seismic risk reduction capabilities, improve preparedness, and resilience by measuring the actual knowledge gain from foreshock identification. The project also explores the extraction of foreshock patterns from waveform properties recorded at a single seismic station.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Statistical Mechanics, Modeling of Complex Systems

## Non-equilibrium dynamics of interfaces with long-range interactions: from theory towards applications

# Titolo Tesi:

Non-equilibrium dynamics of interfaces with long-range interactions: from theory towards applications

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Eugenio Lippiello**] [

**Alessandro Sarracino**] [

**Lucilla De Arcangelis**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Statistical Mechanics, Modeling of Complex Systems, Network Science

## The variational quantum eigensolver algorithm

# Titolo Tesi:

The variational quantum eigensolver algorithm

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Giovanni De Gregorio**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Quantum Computing

## Encoding a two-body Hamiltonian on a quantum computer

# Titolo Tesi:

Encoding a two-body Hamiltonian on a quantum computer

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Giovanni De Gregorio**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Quantum Computing

## Machine Learning the nuclear shell model

# Titolo Tesi:

Machine Learning the nuclear shell model

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**LUIGI CORAGGIO**] [

**Nunzio Itaco**] [

**Giovanni De Gregorio**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Theoretical Physics, Microscopic Nuclear Structure

## Many-Body Nuclear Systems with Low-Energy Effective Field Theory Potential Models

# Titolo Tesi:

Many-Body Nuclear Systems with Low-Energy Effective Field Theory Potential Models

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**LUIGI CORAGGIO**] [

**Giovanni De Gregorio**] [

**Nunzio Itaco**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Theoretical Physics - Microscopic Nuclear Structure

## Investigation of the 7Be electron capture in different environments

# Titolo Tesi:

Investigation of the 7Be electron capture in different environments

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Lucio Gialanella**] [

**Raffaele Buompane**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Nuclear and subnuclear physics, Theoretical physics

## Measurement of the cross section of 12C(a,g)16O at astrophysical energies of interest

# Titolo Tesi:

Measurement of the cross section of 12C(a,g)16O at astrophysical energies of interest

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Raffaele Buompane**] [

**Lucio Gialanella**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Nuclear and subnuclear physics, Nuclear astrophysics

## Mid-infrared ethylene spectroscopy for the FAMU experiment

# Titolo Tesi:

Mid-infrared ethylene spectroscopy for the FAMU experiment

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Livio Gianfrani**] [

**Eugenio Fasci**] [

**Luigi Moretti**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

The FAMU (Fisica degli Atomi MUonici) collaboration, supported by the National Institute for Nuclear Physics, is doing an experiment for the first hyperfine splitting measurement of the muonic hydrogen (μp) ground state at the muon beam facility of the Rutherford-Appleton Laboratory (RAL), UK. The experiment aims to perform a determination of the proton size with higher precision (<1%) than previously possible. Such an ambitious goal requires an accurate frequency calibration at the wavelength region nearby 6789 nm, with a direct traceability to the SI frequency standard. This is possible by exploiting the absorption spectrum of ethylene, which is an asymmetric top molecule with 12 normal modes of vibration. The v_{12} fundamental vibrational band exhibits strong components in coincidence with the expected wavelength of the μp spin-flip transition. Within the MENPHYS project (funded in the framework of the PRIN2022 Program), the knowledge of these lines will be significantly improved, thus reaching the sub-MHz level of uncertainty for the central frequencies. To this aim, a mid-infrared comb-calibrated laser spectrometer is being developed. The apparatus is based upon the joint use of a continuous wave, room-temperature, distributed feedback (DFB) quantum cascade laser (QCL) and a self-referenced near-infrared Er-doped fiber-laser COMB. An up-conversion process in a nonlinear crystal should be performed by means of Sum Frequency Generation. Such scheme allows the QCL frequency to be directly referred to the repetition frequency of the comb without any contribution from the carrier-envelope-offset frequency. Tuning of the repetition-rate will allow to perform comb-calibrated frequency scans of the QCL throughout the absorption lines of interest. High-quality absorption spectra will be recorded at different gas pressures in an isothermal cell. From nonlinear least-squares fits of the line profiles (based upon the most refined semiclassical models), the zero-pressure absolute center frequencies will be retrieved with a global uncertainty of about 100 kHz.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Quantum Electronics for Atomic Physics; Laser Spectroscopy

## Investigation of electromagnetic induced transparency in mercury vapors: a new platform for quantum technologies

# Titolo Tesi:

Investigation of electromagnetic induced transparency in mercury vapors: a new platform for quantum technologies

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Livio Gianfrani**] [

**Stefania Gravina**]

Ext.: [

**]**

**Brief Description:**

Electromagnetically-induced transparency (EIT) is a nonlinear optical phenomenon observed in atomic systems with a three-level energy structure. Introduced by Stephen Ernest Harris and co-workers at Stanford University in 1990, EIT exploits quantum interference to induce transparency within a resonant and otherwise opaque medium. In other words, the transmission of a probe beam through an optically dense medium is manipulated by means of a control beam. Therefore, EIT offers the possibility to control light with light. For this reason, it is attracting a growing interest for quantum information and quantum sensing technologies, including the practical realization of light storage and quantum memory devices.

There are three possible configurations for a three-level structure, known as lambda (Λ), vee (V) and ladder schemes. We intend to perform high-resolution spectroscopy of mercury vapors employing an original ladder-type EIT configuration. In this scheme, EIT manifests as optical transparency at wavelengths nearby the atomic transition from the ground state |g> to the excited state |e>, which normally exhibits significant attenuation, and an associated reduction in group velocity of the incident signal field. This transparency and slowed group velocity is due to the presence of a second, strong, optical control field which couples the excited state with an upper one (|s>), where the |s>→|e> transition is electric-dipole allowed while the |s>→|g> transition is forbidden.

Specifically, our EIT scheme involves a weak probe field nearby the intercombination transition of mercury from the ground state 6^{1}S_{0} to the excited state 6^{3}P_{1} at 253.7 nm. Coherent deep-UV radiation is generated by means of a frequency-quadrupled scheme of an extended cavity diode laser (ECDL) at 1014.8 nm in a pair of nonlinear crystals. The near-infrared radiation is locked to an optical frequency comb, which in turn is stabilized against an ultra-stable GPS-disciplined Rb clock. In this way, we are able to perform comb-calibrated UV frequency scans throughout the intercombination line by tuning the comb repetition-rate.

The experiment aims to observe EIT for the ^{200}Hg bosonic and ^{199}Hg fermionic isotopes to investigate the influence of hyperfine structure effects. We intend to acquire and analyse experimental transmission profiles of the signal beam as a function of control frequency shift for different levels of the resonant control-field power within the warm atomic system.

**Preparatory Courses:**

Quantum Electronics for Atomic Physics; Laser Spectroscopy

## Cold hydrogen molecules for spectroscopic tests of fundamental interactions.

# Titolo Tesi:

Cold hydrogen molecules for spectroscopic tests of fundamental interactions.

**Thesis Supervisors:**Int.: [

**Livio Gianfrani**]

Ext.: [

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**Brief Description:**

**Preparatory Courses:**

Quantum Electronics for Atomic Physics; Laser Spectroscopy